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The Fascinating History of Ann Arbor’s Iconic Bookstore Mural

The Fascinating History of Ann Arbor's Iconic Bookstore Mural

Ann Arbor’s The Bookstore Mural is a famous outdoor mural by artist Richard Wolk located on the corner of Liberty Street and State Street in downtown. The mural is an Ann Arbor emblem and one of the city’s most prominent pieces of public art.

The work, sometime ago known as the Bookstore Mural, was painted in 1984 when David’s Books occupied the corner of Liberty Street and State Street. A Potbelly Sandwich store presently is housed in the building.

Bloomfield Hills-based Richard Wolk, who graduated from the University of Michigan, contacted the management at David’s Books (which closed in 2011) in early 1984 on the subject of replacing a preceding bookstore-related mural with something a bit more fun: actual authors. He started work in March 1984 and completed it in June 1984.

According to a feature in the July 8, 1984 issue of the Ann Arbor News,

The mural certainly rebels against bare cement, but whether it’s an artisitic rebellion is, well, unclear.

Larger than life, the giants of literature beckon passersby into David’s Books, the owner of which commissioned the mural.

Is the mural a billboard, a clever advertisement for the books and ideas behind the wall? Perhaps partly, but to Ed Koster, the owner of the bookshop, who hired the artist, the mural is “aesthetic.”

“I like the portraits themselves,” he said, “but I would have preferred a different background.” The background is in two parts: a starry night sky above a field a flowers.

The Fascinating History of Ann Arbor's Iconic Bookstore Mural

Measuring about 60 feet by 20 feet, the mural portrays the headshots of five cultural icons, whose work was familiar to the artist Richard Wolk.

  • Woody Allen: the American film director, scriptwriter, and actor. Allen has starred in most of his own films, many of which have won Oscars and which hilariously survey themes of psychosis and sexual shortcomings. Artist Wolk chose Woody Allen because of the proximity of the mural to Ann Arbor’s historic Michigan Theater and State Theater.
  • Edgar Allan Poe: the American short-story writer, poet, and critic whose fiction and poetry are Gothic and characterized by their examination of the gruesome and the bizarre.
  • Hermann Hesse: the German-born Swiss novelist and poet whose written works reflect his concern in spiritual Eastern values and his enthusiasm for Jungian psychoanalysis.
  • Franz Kafka: the Prague-born Czech German-language novelist, who wrote in German whose written works portray of an mysterious and terrifying realism where the individual is apparent as lonesome, confused, and defenseless.
  • Anais Nin: the French-American writer whose first novel House of Incest (1936) evokes haunting images of love, lust, desire, emotion, and pain. Wolk selected Anais Nin because his 1984 girlfriend liked Nin’s writing.

The Bookstore Mural has also been called The Poet Mural, Liberty Street Mural, and East Liberty Street Wall Mural.

In 2010, the mural gained significant media attention as the original painter was hired to touch it up, 26 years after he originally painted it.

The Bookstore Mural was represented in the official movie posters for the 2011 film, Answer This, which was mainly filmed in various locations around Ann Arbor—the setting is the University of Michigan.

The famous mural is also one of the most prominent public places for the setting of wedding pictures.

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The Romantic Rome at Nighttime

The Romantic Rome at Nighttime

During the day, Rome is a very busy modern city of two and a half million people and people are going about their business—they are crowding onto the buses, they are trying to hail a taxi, there speeding like heck through traffic—and it really can be very exhausting.

When the sun goes down, the entire character changes and it’s not just for tourists but for the people there and this is what they live for in Rome. To be able to come out and socialize and everything becomes more relaxed and people’s attitude changes. For them, the and evening is not “I’m going to rush here to this concert” and “I’m going to rush there to get dinner” and “I’m going to grab something to go” the way many Americans would do—instead it’s settling down into this easy rhythm of life and seeing what’s going to happen next.

Think about to the traditional Roman siesta. People will take their large meal in the afternoon and maybe even sit down and take a little nap or watch a little TV for 20 minutes or something—all in order to recharge their batteries so that they can come out at night and that’s when they really live and that’s what tourist should also do. Take a little break from your sightseeing in the heat of the mid-afternoon, take your little siesta, and gear up for the wonder of Roman nighttime.

Archaeologist Rome Romantic Rome by Night

Archaeologist’s Rome by Day and the Romantic Rome by Night

Get ready for the transformation of Roman grandiosity to Italian intimacy. What makes an intimate Rome easier is the way the city is lit at night. It was a deliberate choice on the part of the city administration not to have this neon glare that sort of flattens everything and makes everything look the same, but to have these very soft orange lights that are supposed to imitate the light of a torches in the past. So when you stroll through the city at night you can’t see everything together from afar. You have to discover it closely as you get to it. All this affords a gradual intimate look that you’ll really love and also makes you imagine the city in the evening.

There is an interesting distinction—there’s the grand Rome and then there’s the intimate Rome. By day it really is the grand Rome with icons such as the great Roman monuments, the Coliseum, and Pantheon. But really that the night-time Rome is the small, medieval lanes the people walk through. By day it’s the archaeologist’s Rome and by night is the romantic Rome.

The Aperitivo Culture - Romantic Rome at Nighttime

The Aperitivo Culture

Even if you’re not a type of person that likes a cocktail before dinner, have a drink on a piece of expensive real estate, enjoy the little munchies surrounded by local people doing exactly that. If you’re in the mood to splurge, join in a rooftop bar at a hotel downtown, or just have an aperitivo on one of the squares. Then have dinner, skip dessert, take an after-dinner stroll with gelato.

A wonderful Roman night is all about the pace of things. Romans don’t try to fit in like dinner and a show … it just kind of dinner. You linger over each course because the meal becomes the evening’s entertainment itself and the Romans love to dress up to go out to meet their friends, sit at a little cafe or restaurant with rickety tables and traffic roaring past them. It’s that little slice of intimacy where they can then get into that pace of life and that rhythm of life where each course becomes a new magical thing. Don’t be a traveler who wants to keep it moving.

Charming Medieval Roman Neighborhood Trastevere

Trastevere—a Charming Medieval Roman Neighborhood with an Intense Character

You got that that local pride; there was a time when they would never cross the river on the other side of the Tiber River. In fact, literally Trastevere means “the other side of the river”—the district’s name derives from the Latin words “Trans Tiberim” beyond the Tiber River.

This is that other side of Rome—the intimate side of Rome—the Rome of the narrow lanes of the red pastel colors, buildings with green ivy hanging down with the people’s laundry hanging overhead, lanes pop into tiny little squares that feature little cafes, restaurants, pizzerias where you can sit down and enjoy your meal. The food is great, the aperitifs are great, but it really is presenting you the theater of the people. Don’t let that pass by. Hang out in these squares and you’re paying your cover charge for a great celebration of life.

Nighttime Romantic Walks - Romantic Rome at Nighttime

Nighttime Romantic Walks in Roman

For a great walk, start from St Peter’s Square because in the evening is lit up splendidly and I would just walk towards the river where the Castel Sant’Angelo, a Fortress where the Popes used to escape to in the past. It’s also a little beautifully lit monument cross the river Tiber, where you can cross the bridge of the Angels which is decorated with his beautiful Bernini statues. Walk along the Via dei Coronari and it does give us that back street village that is very romantic and end up at the beautiful square Piazza Navona.

Castel Sant’Angelo was originally a tomb for Emperor Hadrian. That was the original structure and then it took on other uses as time went on and in the medieval times because it was so tall and so monumental, it was used as a castle and as a prison. This tomb for Emperor Hadrian is across from the river Tiber because Ancient Roman laws established that the dead had to be buried outside the city.

it’s a wonderful place to go up at sunset. A great way to kick off your evening you go up there and you look across and you have this incredible view of Michelangelo’s Dome and all of the other domes of the city. You watch the sun turn orange and you watch the pigeons as they start flying by and this is where you begin to see night descend on the Eternal City.

What’s great about Rome at night is that on the one hand you’re walking down a little alley way or a little narrow street and then torch lit or seemingly torch lit with this new lighting and on all of a sudden you pop out and there’s a floodlit monument … there’s the pantheon … and all that then surprise element and you’re getting that mix of this very romantic and dark that this then punctuated with a blaze of light and glory from ancient monument and you can have a kind of a quiet street and suddenly you step into a floodlit square with three grand fountains and artists and street musicians and outdoor cafes in the evening.

Via del Corso Spanish Steps - Romantic Rome at Nighttime

Via del Corso, the Fountains, and the Spanish Steps in Rome

The main drag, the Via del Corso is shutdown, with police on horses monitoring the activities. It says a lot about the way in which an urban setting can be experienced … the Romans hate crowds as much as anybody else but they also don’t like deserted places. The passeggiata can feel that you’re part of a community … part of something bigger than just yourself.

Go to the Spanish Steps because that’s where all of Rome will be descending for nightfall and you will see the things that are typical of Rome at night. Witness the flood lights, see Bernini’s fountain down at the base, with people sitting on the on the steps, and if you wanted to you could climb up to the top where you can get a great view out over all of Rome so you can really feel like you are in one place but you’re taking part of the entire city.

Fall in Love with Nighttime Rome

During the day it can be an overwhelming city by day where everyone’s in a hurry and traffic generally competes with some of the greatest city views anywhere, but after dark that’s when Rome becomes a true spectacle.

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The Phenomenon That’s Guernica—Picasso’s Fabled Artwork

The Phenomenon that's Guernica---Picasso's Fabled Artwork

To tackle appreciating the art of Spain, you can certainly hit the top highlights. That would include the Prado Museum in Madrid, arguably Europe’s greatest painting museum. Also in Madrid is Picasso’s Guernica, a monster painting that not only is a testament against modern warfare but is so much part of the Spanish history with its horses and bulls and weeping women imagery and gets right to the heart of Spain’s Civil War.

I’d certainly put on the list the Alhambra in Granada. This is evocative of 700 years of Muslim settlement in Spain which we now think of this great Catholic country but for 700 years ago it was Muslim. The Alhambra is a lush Arabian-nights-wonderland is the best place to appreciate the Muslim settlement of Spain.

Finally there’s Gaudi’s unfinished Cathedral of Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. This gives the grandeur of Spanish dreams into this cake-melting-in-the-rain sort of architecture with the soaring towers this become very much the symbol of the city of Barcelona.

The Prado Museum’s incredible wealth of paintings is my favorite collection of paintings from all of Europe. Madrid has so many art treasures because it was the capital of the Spanish colonial empire. The Prado’s collection is illustrative of the how important Spain was in the past. There are a lot of famous Flemish paintings there because the Netherlands was actually a Spanish colony.

The Guernica, located in Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Spain’s National Museum, is incredible painting by Picasso. In a lot of ways it is the painting of Europe—when you talk about the struggles of the 20th century. The reason why Guernica is located in Madrid is that Picasso was the curator of the Prado Museum during those 12 years in the Spanish Civil War and that is always his cubist interpretation of the Spanish Civil War. The message is absolutely bleak, with direct impact. In black and white, the piece has the importance of a newspaper photo. Flailing bulls and horses illustrate that the visceral horrors of war are not just an insult to human civilization, but to human life.

Picasso Painting Guernica For many years Picasso’s Guernica was actually in exile in New York City and that’s because Picasso insisted that the painting was so much against the then dictatorial government of Spain, led by Francisco Franco. Picasso would not allow his painting to be in a Franco-ruled Spain and it wasn’t until Franco finally died and a new democratic regime came in to power that that painting could be repatriated and brought back to its homeland. Guernica is a vast canvas in solemn tones of grey and blue, it shows in scorching detail the suffering of people and animals as bombs fell on their town.

Guernica is actually a town in the Basque Province of northern Spain, to the east of Bilbao. Formerly the seat of a Basque parliament and it was bombed in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War, by German planes in support of Franco. This event is depicted in the famous painting by Picasso. Picasso’s painting of the bombing of Guernica is one of the 20th century’s most famous images.

Franco died in 1975, but sadly Picasso died two years before that and he lived to see the day when his most famous painting went back to his homeland. Picasso pledged that neither he nor this painting would ever pay a visit to Spain until democracy was restored. This did not happen until 1978, five years after his death.

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Top 10 Russian Authors and Their Masterpieces

Top 10 Russian Authors and Their Masterpieces

1. Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910)

  • Anna Karenina (1875–7)—“All happy families resemble one another, but each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”
  • War and Peace (1865–9)—“The strongest of all warriors are these two—time and patience.”

2. Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821–1881)

  • Crime and Punishment (1866)—“Pain and suffering are always inevitable for a large intelligence and a deep heart. The really great men must, I think, have great sadness on earth.”
  • The Brothers Karamazov (1880)—“Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.”

3. Anton Chekhov (1860–1904)

  • The Three Sisters (1901)—“Man must work by the sweat of his brow whatever his class, and that should make up the whole meaning and purpose of his life and happiness and contentment.”
  • Uncle Vanya (1897)—“When a woman isn’t beautiful, people always say, ‘You have lovely eyes, you have lovely hair.”
  • The Cherry Orchard (1904)—“To begin to live in the present, we must first atone for our past and be finished with it, and we can only atone for it by suffering, by extraordinary, unceasing exertion.”

4. Alexander Pushkin (1799–1837)

  • Eugene Onegin (1833)
    “A woman’s love for us increases
    The less we love her, sooth to say—
    She stoops, she falls, her struggling ceases;
    Caught fast, she cannot get away.”
  • Boris Godunov (1825)
    “Pimen [writing in front of a sacred lamp]:
    One more, the final record, and my annals
    Are ended, and fulfilled the duty laid
    By God on me a sinner. Not in vain
    Hath God appointed me for many years
    A witness, teaching me the art of letters;
    A day will come when some laborious monk
    Will bring to light my zealous, nameless toil,
    Kindle, as I, his lamp, and from the parchment
    Shaking the dust of ages will transcribe
    My true narrations.”

5. Nikolai Gogol (1809–1852)

  • Taras Bulba (1835)—“Turn around, son! What a funny figure you are! Are those priests’ cassocks you are wearing? And do they all go about like that at the academy?” With these words old Bulba greeted his two sons who had been studying at the Kiev college and had come home to their father.”
  • Dead Souls (1842)—“As you pass from the tender years of youth into harsh and embittered manhood, make sure you take with you on your journey all the human emotions! Don’t leave them on the road, for you will not pick them up afterwards!”

6. Mikhail Sholokhov (1905–1984)

  • And Quiet Flows the Don (1934)—“The grass grows over the graves, time overgrows the pain. The wind blew away the traces of those who had departed; time blows away the bloody pain and the memory of those who did not live to see their dear ones again—and will not live, for brief is human life, and not for long is any of us granted to tread the grass.”

7. Mikhail Bulgakov (1891–1940)

  • The Master and Margarita (1966-67)—“The tongue can conceal the truth, but the eyes never! You’re asked an unexpected question, you don’t even flinch, it takes just a second to get yourself under control, you know just what you have to say to hide the truth, and you speak very convincingly, and nothing in your face twitches to give you away. But the truth, alas, has been disturbed by the question, and it rises up from the depths of your soul to flicker in your eyes and all is lost.”

8. Ivan Turgenev (1818–1883)

  • Fathers and Sons (1862)—“Nature is not a temple, but a workshop, and man’s the workman in it.”
  • On the Eve (1860)—“No matter how often you knock at nature’s door, she won’t answer in words you can understand—for Nature is dumb. She’ll vibrate and moan like a violin, but you mustn’t expect a song.”

9. Maxim Gorky (1868–1936)

  • The Lower Depths (1902)—“Everybody, my friend, everybody lives for something better to come. That’s why we want to be considerate of every man—Who knows what’s in him, why he was born and what he can do?”

10. Mikhail Lermontov (1814–1841)

  • A Hero of our Time (1840)—“The love of savages isn’t much better than the love of noble ladies; ignorance and simple-heartedness can be as tiresome as coquetry.”
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The Magnificent Jaganmohan Palace and Art Gallery Building in Mysore

The Magnificent Jaganmohan Palace and Art Gallery Building in Mysore

As the name itself signifies, the Jaganmohan Palace is an elegant and majestic building in Mysore. Actually it is at a walking distance from the Mysore palace to the west of it. It was originally built during the rule of Krishnaraja Wadeyar III sometime in 1860. When there was an accidental fire in the Mysore palace, this was used as a palace and all important functions took place here. The marriage of the then Yuvaraja was celebrated in this palace.

Glow of Hope by Sawlaram Haldankar in Sri Jayachamarajendra Art Gallery, Mysore This palace also served as the durbar hall until the completion of the new pavilion in 1910. Another important function that took place here was the installation of His Highness the Maharaja in 1902 which was graced by Lord Curzon, the Governor General and Viceroy of India.

Later in 1900, a spacious and ornamental pavilion was added to the then existing palace. It was specially designed for the invitees to witness marriages, royal installations, and birthday celebrations. The long hall has two balconies on both sides so that the royal women could witness the functions.

Subsequently the Representative Assembly meetings took place here. Even Mysore university convocations were held here for some time.

Raja Ravi Varma Paintings in Sri Jayachamarajendra Art Gallery, Mysore

Today this palace has been made into an art gallery. The three-story structure behind the main hall is a fine repository of paintings, sculptures, musical instruments and other artefacts connected with Mysore royal family. The excellent paintings include those made by Raja Ravivarma, Ramavarma, and some European artists and Roerich.

Particularly interesting are the paintings giving the genealogy of Mysore kings and other matters of interest. The front facade of this palace is majestic with stucco ornamentation and broad doors. Minarets and domes at the four corners are highly pleasing.

Jaganmohan Art Gallery The central part has a vimana like tower with minarets and kalasha. The miniature sikharas on either side have chaitya like niches and the same is found at the central dome. Thus, it looks very elegant. It has a vast enclosure with a fine garden and huge shady trees. Hundreds of tourists visit this palace daily to get a glimpse of the Mysore royalty through paintings and other artefacts in the rare ambiance of a contemporary palace for which the Maharajas were famous universally.

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Synopsis of the “Romeo and Juliet” Ballet in Three Acts

Synopsis of the 'Romeo and Juliet' Ballet in Three Acts

Romeo and Juliet was first performed by The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House on February 9, 1965. It entered the repertoire of American Ballet Theatre on January 3, 1985, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, D.C. with Leslie Browne and Robert La Fosse in the leading roles of Juliet and Romeo.

Romeo and Juliet Ballet: ACT I

  • Scene #1: The Market Place. The scene is Verona. Romeo, son of Montague, tries vainly to declare his love for Rosaline and is comforted by his friends Mercutio and Benvolio. As day breaks the townsfolk meet in the market place, and a squabble develops between Tybalt, a nephew of Capulet, and Romeo and his friends. The Capulets and Montagues are sworn enemies, and a fight soon starts. The Lords Montague and Capulet join in the fray, which is stopped by the appearance of the Prince of Verona, who orders the families to end their feud.
  • 'The Ballet Book' by American Ballet Theater (ISBN 0789308657) Scene #2: Juliet’s Anteroom in the Capulet House. Juliet, playing with her nurse, is interrupted by her parents, Lord and Lady Capulet. They present her to Paris, an affluent young aristocrat who has asked for her hand in marriage.
  • Scene #3: Outside the Capulet House. Guests arrive for a ball at the Capulets’ household. Romeo, Mercutio, and Benvolio, disguised in masks, decide to go in pursuit of Rosaline.
  • Scene #4: The Ballroom. Romeo and his friends arrive at the height of the revelries. The guests watch Juliet dance. Mercutio, seeing Romeo is entranced by her, dances to sidetrack attention from him. Tybalt recognizes Romeo and orders him to leave, but Lord Capulet interferes and receives him as a guest in his house.
  • Scene #5: Outside the Capulet House. As the guests leave the ball, Lady Capulet contains Tybalt from pursuing Romeo.
  • Scene #6: Juliet’s Balcony. Unable to sleep, Juliet comes out on to her balcony and is thinking of Romeo when he suddenly appears in the garden. They acknowledge their love for each other.

Romeo and Juliet Ballet: ACT II

  • Scene #1: The Market Place. Romeo can think just of Juliet. Moreover, as a wedding pageant passes, he dreams of the day when he will marry her. Meanwhile, Juliet’s nurse pushes her way through the crowds looking for Romeo to give him a letter from Juliet. He reads that Juliet has agreed to be his wife.
  • Scene #2: The Chapel. The lovers are clandestinely married by Friar Laurence, who hopes that their union will end the discord between the Montagues and the Capulets.
  • Scene #3: The Market Place. Interjecting the revelry, Tybalt fights with Mercutio and kills him. Romeo avenges the death of his friend and is banished.

Romeo and Juliet Ballet: ACT III

  • Scene #1: The Bedroom. At dawn the next morning, the household is agitating and Romeo must go. He hugs Juliet and leaves as her parents enter with Paris. Juliet declines to marry Paris, and hurt by her snub, he leaves. Juliet’s parents are annoyed and threaten to disclaim her. Juliet rushes to see Friar Laurence.
  • 'Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina' by Misty Copeland (ISBN 1476737991) Scene #2: The Chapel. Juliet falls at the Friar’s feet and begs for his help. He gives her an ampoule of sleeping potion that will make her fall into a death-like sleep. Her parents, believing her dead, will bury her in the family tomb. Meanwhile, Romeo, warned by Friar Laurence, will revisit under cover of darkness and take her away from Verona.
  • Scene #3: The Bedroom. That evening, Juliet agrees to marry Paris, but next morning, when her parents arrive with him they find her seemingly lifeless on the bed.
  • Scene #4: The Capulet Family Crypt. Romeo, failing to receive the Friar’s communication, returns to Verona dumbfounded by grief at the news of Juliet’s death. Masquerading as a monk, he enters the crypt. Finding Paris by Juliet’s body, Romeo kills him and, thinking Juliet to be dead, drinks a vial of poison. Juliet awakes and, finding Romeo dead, stabs herself.
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Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

Deep inside the world’s longest (204 km) and deepest (approx. 1,300 meters or 4,300 feet) Sognefjorden—“King of the fjords”—valley, you’ll find tranquil Flam. This beautiful country town nuzzles amongst mountains as high as the fjord is deep. Flam began to draw visiting cruise ships as long ago as the 19th century when visitors firstly began to travel up the idyllic and dramatic Flam valley.

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

Flam is home to the Aegir microbrewery is named after the giant who brewed beer for the gods. Their bar is themed like an old Viking hall, with wooden carvings and chairs made from stumps.

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway Aegir Bryggeri and Pub from 2007 is a microbrewery, built in Norse Viking style where they produce a wide selection of fine beers for sale locally and further distribution.

Visit the brewery with slate floor, driftwood walls, dragon heads, and 9 meters high fire from floor to ceiling. In a short time, they have received awards and prizes for their good beers.

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

Aegir Bryggeri was awarded “Brewpub of the Year” three years in a row! Try their beers and light meals in the brewery.

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

The Aegir Bryggeri BrewPub building at Flamsbrygga is now one of Flam’s biggest attractions. The building style is inspired by Norse mythology, with the exterior reminiscent of a stave church. Inside are driftwood walls, dragon heads and a feature fireplace that radiates warmth and coziness, with a chimney extending 9 m through the middle of both stories.

Aegir Bryggeri Pub & Microbrewery in Flam, Norway

The port of Flam, with its newly constructed dockside amenities, welcomes all types of cruise ships, regardless of length, height or depth. The harbor is well-known for its remarkable infrastructure and good communication routes via both road and rail to Bergen and Oslo.

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150 Baseball Quotes

150 Baseball Quotes “The designated hitter rule is like letting someone else take Wilt Chamberlain’s free throws”
— Rick Wise

“Nobody ever said, “Work ball!” They say, “Play ball!” To me, that means having fun”
— Willie Stargell

“Baseball is the only sport I know that when you’re on offense, the other team controls the ball”
— Ken Harrelson

“The pitcher has to find out if the hitter is timid. And if the hitter is timid, he has to remind the hitter he’s timid”
— Don Drysdale

“Trying to sneak a pitch past Hank Aaron is like trying to sneak a sunrise past a rooster”
— Joe Adcock and Curt Simmons

“I didn’t get over 1300 walks without knowing the strike zone.”
— Wade Boggs

“The strongest thing that baseball has going for it today are its yesterdays.”
— Lawrence Ritter

“Baseball is a lot like life. The line drives are caught, the squibbers go for base hits. It’s an unfair game”
— Rod Kanehl

“I’m convinced that every boy, in his heart, would rather steal second base than an automobile.”
— Tom Clark

“I don’t know why people like the home run so much. A home run is over as soon as it starts…. The triple is the most exciting play of the game. A triple is like meeting a woman who excites you, spending the evening talking and getting more excited, then taking her home. It drags on and on. You’re never sure how it’s going to turn out”
— George Foster

“When I was a little boy, I wanted to be a baseball player, and join the circus. With the Yankees, I’ve accomplished both”
— Anthony Standen

“Grantland Rice, the great sportswriter once said, ‘It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game.’ Well Grantland Rice can go to hell as far as I’m concerned”
— Gene Autry

“Baseball is a ballet without music. Drama without words”
— Ernie Harwell

“When you’re in a slump, it’s almost as if you look out at the field and it’s one big glove”
— Vance Law

“Why does everybody stand up and sing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” when they’re already there”
— Larry Anderson

“The difference between the old ballplayer and the new ballplayer is the jersey. The old ballplayer cared about the name on the front. The new ballplayer cares about the name on the back”
— Steve Garvey

“Every player, in his secret heart, wants to manage someday. Every fan, in the privacy of his mind, already does”
— Leonard Koppett

“Cardinal rule for all hitters with two strikes on them: Never trust the umpire.”
— Robert Smith

“Back then, my idol was Bugs Bunny, because I saw a cartoon of him playing ball—you know, the one where he plays every position himself with nobody else on the field but him? Now that I think of it, Bugs is still my idol. You have to love a ballplayer like that”
— Nomar Garciaparra

“Mental attitude and concentration are the keys to pitching”
— Ferguson Jenkins

“You know it’s summertime at Candlestick when the fog rolls in, the wind kicks up, and you see the center fielder slicing open a caribou to survive the ninth inning”
— Bob Sarlette

“The greatest thrill in the world is to end the game with a home run and watch everybody else walk off the field while you’re running the bases on air”
— Al Rosen

“I would be lost without baseball. I don’t think I could stand being away from it as long as I was alive”
— Roberto Clemente

“Playing without the fundamentals is like eating without a knife and fork. You make a mess”
— Dick Williams

“All good balls to hit are strikes, though not all strikes are good balls to hit”
— Dave Winfield

“Baseball is a harbor, a seclusion from failure that really matters, a playful utopia in which virtuosity can be savored to the third decimal place of a batting average”
— Mark Kramer

“A critic once characterized baseball as six minutes of action crammed into two-and-one-half hours”
— Ray Fitzgerald

“My stuff was all right, but it’s not about pitching good. It’s about winning. I pitched just good enough to lose”
— Greg Maddux

“It baseball is an American institution and more lasting than some marriages, war, Supreme Court decisions and even major depressions”
— Art Rust

“People like us are afraid to leave ball. What else is there to do? When baseball has been your whole life, you can’t think about a future without it, so you hang on as long as you can”
— Willie Stargell

150 Baseball Quotes “Basketball, hockey and track meets are action heaped upon action, climax upon climax, until the onlooker’s responses become deadened. Baseball is for the leisurely afternoons of summer and for the unchanging dreams”
— Roger Kahn

“Hello again, everybody. It’s a bee-yooo-tiful day for baseball”
— Harry Caray

“Baseball? It’s just a game—as simple as a ball and a bat. Yet, as complex as the American spirit it symbolizes. It’s a sport, business—and sometimes even religion.”
— Ernie Harwell

“Awards mean a lot, but they don’t say it all. The people in baseball mean more to me than statistics”
— Ernie Banks

“One of the beautiful things about baseball is that every once in a while you come into a situation where you want to, and where you have to, reach down and prove something.”
— Nolan Ryan

“Baseball is a fun game. It beats working for a living”
— Phil Linz

“Baseball is a man maker”
— Al Spalding

“Love America and hate baseball? Hate America and love baseball? Neither is possible, except in the abstract”
— John Krich

“It’s hard to win a pennant, but it’s harder losing one”
— Chuck Tanner

“If I would be happy, I would be a very bad ball player. With me, when I get mad, it puts energy in my body.”
— Roberto Clemente

“It’s no coincidence that female interest in the sport of baseball has increased greatly since the ballplayers swapped those wonderful old-time baggy flannel uniforms for leotards.”
— Mike Royko

“Though I like the various forms of football in the world, I don’t think they begin to compare with these two great Anglo-Saxon ball games for sophisticated elegance and symbolism. Baseball and cricket are beautiful and highly stylized medieval war substitutes, chess made flesh, a mixture of proud chivalry and base—in both senses—greed. With football we are back to the monotonous clashing armor of the brontosaurus.”
— John Fowles

“No game in the world is as tidy and dramatically neat as baseball, with cause and effect, crime and punishment, motive and result, so cleanly defined”
— Paul Gallico

“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring”
— Rogers Hornsby

“When they start the game, they don’t yell, “Work ball.” They say, “Play ball.””
— Willie Stargell

“Trying to get a fast ball past Hank Aaron is like trying to get the sun past a rooster.”
— Curt Simmons

“A knuckleball is a curve ball that doesn’t give a damn”
— Jimmy Cannon

“Baseball, to me, is still the national pastime because it is a summer game. I feel that almost all Americans are summer people, that summer is what they think of when they think of their childhood. I think it stirs up an incredible emotion within people”
— Steve Busby

“The great thing about baseball is that there’s a crisis every game”
— Gabe Paul

“The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait until the ball stops rolling and then pick it up”
— Bob Uecker

“Baseball isn’t a business, it’s more like a disease”
— Walter F. O’Malley

“Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s success or put its failures behind and start over again. That’s the way life is, with a new game every day, and that’s the way baseball is.”
— Bob Feller

“Back then, if you had a sore arm, the only people concerned were you and your wife. Now it’s you, your wife, your agent, your investment counselor, your stockbroker, and your publisher.”
— Jim Bouton

“The place was always cold, and I got the feeling that the fans would have enjoyed baseball more if it had been played with a hockey puck”
— Andre Dawson

“Life is like a baseball game. When you think a fastball is coming, You gotta be ready to hit the curve”
— Jaja Q.

“Good pitching will beat good hitting any time, and vice versa”
— Bob Veale

“Well, boys, it’s a round ball and a round bat and you got to hit the ball square”
— Joe Schultz

“It’s a pretty sure thing that the player’s bat is what speaks loudest when it’s contract time, but there are moments when the glove has the last word”
— Brooks Robinson

“There are three things in my life which I really love: God, my family, and baseball. The only problem—once baseball season starts, I change the order around a bit”
— Al Gallagher

“The guy with the biggest stomach will be the first to take off his shirt at a baseball game”
— Glenn Dickey

150 Baseball Quotes “I don’t love baseball. I don’t love most of today’s players. I don’t love the owners. I do love, however, the baseball that is in the heads of baseball fans. I love the dreams of glory of 10-year-olds, the reminiscences of 70-year-olds. The greatest baseball arena is in our heads, what we bring to the games, to the telecasts, to reading newspaper reports.”
— Stan Isaacs

“The pitcher has to throw a strike sooner or later, so why not hit the pitch you want to hit and not the one he wants you to hit?”
— Johnny Mize

“Baseball is dull only to dull minds”
— Red Barber

“Kids are always chasing rainbows, but baseball is a world where you can catch them”
— Johnny Vander Meer

“Ninety feet between the bases is the nearest thing to perfection that man has yet achieved”
— Red Smith

“Progress always involves risks. You can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first.”
— Frederick B. Wilcox

“Don’t forget to swing hard, in case you hit the ball”
— Woodie Held

“Fix your eye on the ball from the moment the pitcher holds it in his glove. Follow it as he throws to the plate and stay with it until the play is completed. Action takes place only where the ball goes”
— Bill Klem

“With those who don’t give a damn about baseball, I can only sympathize. I do not resent them. I am even willing to concede that many of them are physically clean, good to their mothers and in favor of world peace. But while the game is on, I can’t think of anything to say to them”
— Art Hill

“Baseball is a game dominated by vital ghosts; it’s a fraternity, like no other we have of the active and the no longer so, the living and the dead.”
— Richard Gilman

“Life will always throw you curves, just keep fouling them off… the right pitch will come, but when it does, be prepared to run the bases”
— Rick Maksian

“Like those special afternoons in summer when you go to Yankee Stadium at two o’clock in the afternoon for an eight o’clock game. It’s so big, so empty and so silent that you can almost hear the sounds that aren’t there”
— Ray Miller

“Reading about baseball is a lot more interesting than reading about chess, but you have to wonder: Don’t any of these guys ever go fishing?”
— Dave Shiflett

“To a pitcher, a base hit is the perfect example of negative feedback”
— Steve Hovley

“Ninety feet between home plate and first base may be the closest man has ever come to perfection”
— Red Smith

“I ain’t ever had a job. I just always played baseball”
— Leroy Robert

“Players who commit errors need reassurance from the pitcher, who must harbor no grudges.”
— Roger Craig

“What does a mama bear on the pill have in common with the World Series? No cubs”
— Harry Caray

“You know you’re pitching well when the batters look as bad as you do at the plate”
— Duke Snider

“A baseball game is twice as much fun if you’re seeing it on the company’s time”
— William C. Feather

“Baseball is too much of a sport to be called a business, and too much of a business to be called a sport”
— Philip Wrigley

“Baseball is more than a game to me, it’s a religion”
— Bill Klem

“There is no room in baseball for discrimination. It is our national pastime and a game for all.”
— Lou Gehrig

“I never threw an illegal pitch. The trouble is, once in a while I toss one that ain’t never been seen by this generation”
— Leroy Robert

“With those who don’t give a damn about baseball, I can only sympathize. I do not resent them. I am even willing to concede that many of them are physically clean, good to their mothers and in favor of world peace. But while the game is on, I can’t think of anything to say to them”
— Art Hill

“Hit em where they ain’t.”
— Willie Keeler

“I could never play in New York. The first time I came into a game there, I got into the bullpen car and they told me to lock the doors”
— Mike Flanagan

“Pro-rated at 500 at-bats a year that means that for two years out of the fourteen I played, I never even touched the ball.”
— Norm Cash

“The great thing about baseball is that there’s a crisis every day.”
— Gabe Paul

“Catching a fly ball is a pleasure, but knowing what to do with it is a business.”
— Tommy Henrich

150 Baseball Quotes “Baseball is very big with my people. It figures. It’s the only way we can get to shake a bat at a white man without starting a riot”
— Dick Gregory

“Poets are like baseball pitchers. Both have their moments. The intervals are the tough things.”
— Robert Frost

“A baseball manager is a necessary evil”
— Sparky Anderson

“Baseball is 90 percent mental. The other half is physical.”
— Yogi Berra

“Nothing flatters me more than to have it assumed that I could write prose-unless it be to have it assumed that I once pitched a baseball with distinction.”
— Robert Frost

“You teach me baseball and I’ll teach you relativity…No we must not You will learn about relativity faster than I learn baseball”
— Albert Einstein

“Baseball is a game of inches”
— Branch Rickey

“The trouble with baseball is that it is not played the year round”
— Gaylord Perry

“Baseball fans love numbers. They love to swirl them around their mouths like Bordeaux wine”
— Pat Conroy

“Being with a woman all night never hurt no professional baseball player. It’s staying up all night looking for a woman that does him in”
— Casey Stengel

“When I was a small boy in Kansas, a friend of mine and I went fishing…. I told him I wanted to be a real Major League Baseball Player, a genuine professional like Honus Wagner. My friend said that he’d like to be President of the United States. Neither of us got our wish.”
— Dwight D. Eisenhower

“What we have are good gray ballplayers, playing a good gray game and reading the good gray Wall Street Journal. They have been brainwashed, dry-cleaned and dehydrated!… Wake up the echoes at the Hall of Fame and you will find that baseball’s immortals were a rowdy and raucous group of men who would climb down off their plaques and go rampaging through Cooperstown, taking spoils…. Deplore it if you will, but Grover Cleveland Alexander drunk was a better pitcher than Grover Cleveland Alexander sober”
— Bill Veeck

“You gotta be a man to play baseball for a living, but you gotta have a lot of little boy in you, too”
— Roy Campanella

“Baseball is like a poker game. Nobody wants to quit when he’s losing; nobody wants you to quit when you’re ahead.”
— Jackie Robinson

“The best possible thing in baseball is winning the World Series. The second best thing is losing the World Series”
— Tommy Lasorda

“Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball, the rules and realities of the game.”
— Jacques Barzun

“Baseball is a skilled game. It’s America’s game — it, and high taxes”
— Will Rogers

“I’d walk through hell in a gasoline suit to keep playing baseball”
— Pete Rose

“The clock doesn’t matter in baseball. Time stands still or moves backwards. Theoretically, one game could go on forever. Some seem to.”
— Herb Caen

“Baseball is a slow, sluggish game, with frequent and trivial interruptions, offering the spectator many opportunities to reflect at leisure upon the situation on the field: This is what a fan loves most about the game”
— Edward Abbey

“Say this much for big league baseball—it is beyond question the greatest conversation piece ever invented in America”
— Bruce Catton

“England and America should scrap cricket and baseball and come up with a new game that they both can play. Like baseball”
— Robert Benchley

“Little League baseball is a very good thing because it keeps the parents off the streets”
— Yogi Berra

“Baseball gives every American boy a chance to excel, not just to be as good as someone else but to be better than someone else. This is the nature of man and the name of the game”
— Ted Williams

“You owe it to yourself to be the best you can possible be — in baseball and in life.”
— Pete Rose

“When you step into the batter’s box, have nothing on your mind except baseball”
— Pete Rose

“It never ceases to amaze me how many of baseball’s wounds are self-inflicted”
— Bill Veeck

“Baseball is like driving, it’s the one who gets home safely that counts”
— Tommy Lasorda

“Next to religion, baseball has furnished a greater impact on American life than any other institution”
— Herbert Hoover

“Baseball was made for kids, and grown-ups only screw it up”
— Bob Lemon

150 Baseball Quotes “People who write about spring training not being necessary have never tried to throw a baseball”
— Sandy Koufax

“The saddest day of the year is the day baseball season ends”
— Tommy Lasorda

“That’s baseball, and it’s my game. Y’ know, you take your worries to the game, and you leave ’em there. You yell like crazy for your guys. It’s good for your lungs, gives you a lift, and nobody calls the cops. Pretty girls, lots of ’em”
— Humphrey Bogart

“Baseball is reassuring. It makes me feel as if the world is not going to blow up”
— Sharon Olds

“There are only five things you can do in baseball: run, throw, catch, hit, and hit with power.”
— Leo Durocher

“Baseball is almost the only orderly thing in a very unorderly world. If you get three strikes, even the best lawyer in the world can’t get you off.”
— Bill Veeck

“Baseball is the only major sport that appears backwards in a mirror.”
— George Carlin

“I see great things in baseball. It’s our game—the American game. It will take our people out-of-doors, fill them with oxygen, give them a larger physical stoicism. Tend to relieve us from being a nervous, dyspeptic set. Repair these losses, and be a blessing to us”
— Walt Whitman

“Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona. Not all holes, or games, are created equal”
— George Will

“Baseball is what gets inside you, it lights you up, its supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard everyone would do it. The HARD is what makes it great”
— Indian Proverb

“A baseball park is the one place where a man’s wife doesn’t mind his getting excited over somebody else’s curves”
— Brendan Behan

“The great trouble with baseball today is that most of the players are in the game for the money and that’s it, not for the love of it, the excitement of it, the thrill of it.”
— Ty Cobb

“Baseball wrong—man with four balls cannot walk”
— Indian Proverb

“I never thought home runs were all that exciting. I still think the triple is the most exciting thing in baseball. To me, a triple is like a guy taking the ball on his 1-yard line and running 99 yards for a touchdown”
— Hank Aaron

“There are three things you can do in a baseball game. You can win, or you can lose, or it can rain.”
— Casey Stengel

“Baseball is the only thing beside the paper clip that hasn’t changed”
— Bill Veeck

“Baseball serves as a good model for democracy in action: Every player is equally important and each has a chance to be a hero”
— Edward Abbey

“Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer”
— Ted Williams

“Baseball is drama with an endless run and an ever-changing cast.”
— Joe Garagiola

“I think about baseball when I wake up in the morning. I think about it all day and I dream about it at night. The only time I don’t think about it is when I’m playing it”
— Carl Yastrzemski

“Baseball is a simple game. If you have good players and if you keep them in the right frame of mind then the manager is a success”
— Sparky Anderson

“Baseball is not necessarily an obsessive-compulsive disorder, like washing your hands 100 times a day, but it’s beginning to seem that way. We’re reaching the point where you can be a truly dedicated, state-of-the-art fan or you can have a life. Take your pick”
— Thomas Boswell

“More than any other American sport, baseball creates the magnetic, addictive illusion that it can almost be understood.”
— Thomas Boswell

“Baseball is an allegorical play about America, a poetic, complex, and subtle play of courage, fear, good luck, mistakes, patience about fate, and sober self-esteem”
— Saul Steinberg

“Baseball is like church. Many attend few understand.”
— Leo Durocher

“In baseball, my theory is to strive for consistency, not to worry about the numbers. If you dwell on statistics you get shortsighted, if you aim for consistency, the numbers will be there at the end”
— Tom Seaver

“Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical”
— Yogi Berra

“Love is the most important thing in the world, but baseball is pretty good too”
— Yogi Berra

“A baseball fan has the digestive apparatus of a billy goat. He can, and does, devour any set of diamond statistics with insatiable appetite and then nuzzles hungrily for more.”
— Arthur Daley

“Baseball hasn’t been the national pastime for many years now—no sport is. The national pastime, like it or not, is watching television”
— Bob Greene

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The Traditional Celebration of Thanksgiving

The First Thanksgiving (1912--1915) by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

Thanksgiving is a traditional celebration to mark an auspicious event.

Religious celebrations of gratitude took place among many settlers in the Americas in the 1600s. In the United States, the traditional celebration of Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday in November is associated with the Pilgrim settlers of the Plymouth colony in present day Massachusetts.

The most common account of the first Thanksgiving links the celebration to 1621, when the Pilgrims joined with indigenous people to give thanks for a particularly good harvest after a difficult year within the settlement. Several other settlements in the Americas around this time also have claims for celebrating early Thanksgiving.

The idea of the Thanksgiving event had its origins in England during the Protestant Reformation, when reformers were anxious to replace Catholic public holidays with feast days of their own. A tradition began of celebrating fortuitous events with a special thanksgiving meal; conversely, adverse events were marked by a day of fasting. It was hoped that giving thanks to God might bring further good fortune, while fasting might prevent additional disasters.

Even though several of the symbols and traditions of Thanksgiving are taken from the story of the Pilgrims at the Plymouth colony, the holiday is now a celebration of a spirit of gratefulness rather than a commemoration of a particular day or event. As a religious celebration, Thanksgiving is intended to remind those who celebrate it of God as the provider of all good things. Thanksgiving in the United States is also celebrated with a secular appreciation of the work ethic and perseverance of the early U.S. colonists.

Happy Thanksgiving

Here is the Proclamation of Thanksgiving by Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States of America. It was issued by William H. Seward, Lincoln’s Secretary of State on October 3, 1863.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward,

Secretary of State

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Renaissance Icon Painter El Greco and The Light

Self Portrait of Greek-Spanish El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos) Born around 1541, Domenikos Theotokopoulos began his career as an icon painter on the island of Crete. He is best known, under the name El Greco, for the works he created while in Spain, paintings that have provoked both rapt admiration and scornful disapproval since his death in 1614.

The life of the Renaissance painter Domenikos Theotokopoulos, better known as El Greco. El Greco took this style to extremes, creating luminous paintings of great intensity. By turns considered a prescient precursor of modern art or simply a man with bad eyesight, El Greco’s work embodied the exalted spirit of the Counter-Reformation in its zeal to annihilate all traces of Protestantism.

El Greco’s candid portraits have been consistently admired for their naturalism and psychological insight, even when (as in the eighteenth century) his other works fell out of favor.

Renaissance Painter El Greco took this style to extremes, creating luminous paintings of great intensity

Creating Luminous Paintings: El Greco and the Light

On a pleasant spring afternoon, a friend went to visit the painter El Greco. To his surprise, he found him in his atelier with all curtains drawn.

Greco was working on a painting which had the Virgin Mary as the central theme, using only a candle to illuminate the environment.

Surprised, the friend said: “I have always heard that painters like the sun in order to choose well the colors they will use. Why don’t you open the curtains?”

“Not now,” answered El Greco. “It would disturb the brilliant fire of inspiration that is burning in my soul and filling with light everything around me.”

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