Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Speak, Memory

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 8:28 PM

"… the effective work of memory is the very definition of art."

— "In Memoriam: Chris Marker," by Richard Brody,
      New Yorker  weblog post, July 30, 2012

New York Lottery this evening: 178, 0772.

Definition:  See 178 on May 25, 2012.
Art:  See 772 on Nov. 21, 2010 and Harvard Black Diamond.

The time of this post, 8:28, may be taken as
a reference to the date, 8/28, of the Feast of St. Augustine.
Augustine's remarks on memory are not without interest.

The Malfunctioning TARDIS

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:01 AM

(Continued from previous TARDIS posts)

Summary: A review of some  posts from last August is suggested by the death,
reportedly during the dark hours early on October 30, of artist Lebbeus Woods.

An (initially unauthorized) appearance of his work in the 1995 film
Twelve Monkeys 

 … suggests a review of three posts from last August.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Defining Form

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:01 AM 

Continued from July 29 in memory of filmmaker Chris Marker,
who reportedly* died on that date at 91 at his home in Paris.

See Slides and Chantingand Where Madness Lies.

See also Sherrill Grace on Malcolm Lowry.

Washington PostOther sources say Marker died on July 30.

 These notably occur in Marker's masterpiece
     La Jetée  (review with spoilers).


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Triple Feature

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:11 PM

IMAGE- Triple Feature: 'Twelve Monkeys,' Reagan National Airport on July 31, 2012, and 'Die Hard 2'

For related material, see this morning's post Defining Form.


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Doctor Who

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:00 PM

On Robert A. Heinlein's novel Glory Road

"Glory Road  (1963) included the foldbox , a hyperdimensional packing case that was bigger inside than outside. It is unclear if Glory Road  was influenced by the debut of the science fiction television series Doctor Who  on the BBC that same year. In Doctor Who , the main character pilots a time machine called a TARDIS, which is built with technology which makes it 'dimensionally transcendental,' that is, bigger inside than out."

— Todd, Tesseract article at exampleproblems.com

From the same exampleproblems.com article—

"The connection pattern of the tesseract's vertices is the same as that of a 4×4 square array drawn on a torus; each cell (representing a vertex of the tesseract) is adjacent to exactly four other cells. See geometry of the 4×4 square."

For further details, see today's new page on vertex adjacency at finitegeometry.org.


"It was a dark and stormy night."— A Wrinkle in Time

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Black October

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

From AntiChristmas 2010

Image-- Rosalind Krauss and The Ninefold Square

Art theorist Rosalind Krauss and The Ninefold Square

Krauss is a co-founder of the art journal October .
For some backgound, see the overlapping searches
Krauss October and Matrix Architect.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:48 AM

See a paid death notice for architect
John M. Johansen, who died last Friday,
in today's New York Times  from Ennead Architects.

IMAGE- The naming of Ennead Architects


"Ennead" means, according to a story on the firm, a "group of nine."

See also a group of nine from the day of Johansen's death.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:26 AM


IMAGE- Harvard Crimson story on the late John M. Johansen, architect, Harvard '39

Attention must be paid.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Opening Bell

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

Related material:

Hexagram 29: Water

Hexagram 29 and the life of
Robert Palmer Dilworth, who
died on this date in 1993.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

In Like Flynn

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:00 PM

(Continued from this morning's father-son Flynns
and from two other Flynn father-son pairs. See the
fictional Tron pair on Jan. 5, 2011 and Dec. 2, 2011,
and the "Flynn effect" pair from Sept. 23, 2012.)

From a film

Being Flynn  (2012)
[first lines] 
Jonathan Flynn: America has produced only three classic writers – 
Mark Twain, J. D. Salinger and me. I'm Jonathan Flynn. 
Everything I write is a masterpiece. 

and from this journal

"The mind is its own place, and the places inhabited by the insane
and the exceptionally gifted are so different from the places where
ordinary men and women live, that there is little or no common ground
of memory to serve as a basis for understanding or fellow feeling."

—  The Doors of Perception , by Aldous Huxley

"Greet guests with a touch of glass."

—  The Perception of Doors , by Google —

Another Green Door, and…

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 3:48 AM

Another Bullshit Night in Suck City:

IMAGE- 'Another Bullshit Night in Suck City,' by Nick Flynn

For the 2012 film version, see

(Click image below for a review.)

Personally, I prefer the green door of last night's 10 PM post
written partly in honor of the body mentioned here on October 23).

The cover of the Nick Flynn book shows a green door beneath a tree.
For a different tree, but similar metaphor, see Confirmation (July 16, 2007).

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Time in the Garden

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:45 PM

“The voodoo priestess looked across the table at her wealthy client, a man on trial for murder:
‘Now, you know how dead time works. Dead time lasts for one hour– from half an hour
before midnight to half an hour after midnight. The half-hour before midnight is for doin’ good.
The half-hour after midnight is for doin’ evil….’”

– Glenna Whitley, “Voodoo Justice,” The New York Times , March 20, 1994

Sally Forth  on September 5th, 2012—


Behind the Green Door

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 10:00 PM

It's 10 PM .


Posts of October 24th—
Love Ghost and Versions
and a version of Plan 9— 

Favicon 9


Related religious meditation—

Irresistible Grace, illustrated by The Girl in the Yellow Dress.

Many Mansions

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 3:27 AM

John M. Johansen, architect, who
reportedly died yesterday

"It wasn't until reading Carl Jung,
Joseph Campbell, and Thomas Merton
that I understood what a symbol really was."


"Nine is a vine."

Memory rhyme

(See also that phrase in this journal.)

Friday, October 26, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:23 PM

(Continued from July 21, 2012)

USA Today  on a Cuban dissident who died this morning:

Born Dec. 8, 1934, in Madrid, Spain, Gutierrez-Menoyo was the son and brother of men who fought against the Spanish dictator Gen. Francisco Franco.

One of his brothers died in combat in Spain as a member of the Spanish Republican forces. The family moved to Cuba in 1945 and another brother, Carlos, was killed in March 1957 during an attack on the presidential palace of Cuban strongman Fulgencio Batista.

"They could win." — Don Michael Corleone

Noonan Nails It

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:59 PM

Peggy Noonan today on the President—

"He told staffers that John Boehner,
one of 11 children of a small-town bar owner,
was a 'country club Republican.' "

Related material from The Atlantic
on the late author John O'Hara (1905-1970)—

As the son of a prominent surgeon, O'Hara held a social position far above that of almost all other Irish Catholics. But in a world in which "'foreigner' meant anyone who wasn't Anglo-Saxon," as one longtime Pottsville resident told us when we recently visited the town, O'Hara could never quite attain the status of his friends, members of the WASP "anthracite aristocracy." This predestined immobility gave O'Hara an acute sensitivity to minute yet telling social distinctions. He was fascinated by the pattern of a necktie, the make of a car, the brand of Scotch, the choice of collar pin, the misuse of a pronoun, the club joined, the college attended, and how these define— in fact, determine— character. "To read him on a fashionable bar or the Gibbsville country club," Edmund Wilson wrote of O'Hara's fictionalized Pottsville, "is to be shown on the screen of a fluoroscope gradations of social prestige of which one had not before been aware."

— "John O'Hara's Protectorate," by Benjamin and Christina Schwarz, The Atlantic , March 2000

High White Noon

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM


Today's 11:01 AM post discussed time concepts
in Eliot's Four Quartets.

For the temporally challenged, here is
a somewhat simpler conceptual framework—

Three Trios

From a post of Columbus Day
(i.e., Oct. 12), 2011, titled
    "High White Noon" (after DeLillo) —

The 3x3 square

A Study in Art Education

The Malfunctioning TARDIS

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:01 AM

From a Sept. 17, 2010, post of Peter J. Cameron
that was linked to here at 8 AM ET today

In a recurring motif in the second Quartet, “East Coker”, Eliot says,

Time future and time past
Are both somehow contained in time present

and, in “Little Gidding”,

… to apprehend
The point of intersection of the timeless
With time, is an occupation for the saint

This should read instead…

In a recurring motif in the first Quartet, “Burnt Norton”, Eliot says,

Time present and time past
Are both perhaps present in time future
And time future contained in time past

and, in “The Dry Salvages”,

… to apprehend
The point of intersection of the timeless
With time, is an occupation for the saint

Related material from this journal in 2003

Nine Tailors

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

A sequel to the Plan 9 post of September 5th, 2012

Windows 8 Review

Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:00 AM

"There's nothing wrong with the system. It's perfect."
John Anderton in Minority Report

IMAGE- Tom Cruise at a computer display in 'Minority Report'

Click image for a trailer. For some
deeper philosophical reflections, see
a post in this journal from the trailer's
upload date and its link to "Eliot's Yew,"
by Peter J. Cameron.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:00 AM

Matines sont sonnées.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Documenting Victims

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 8:48 PM

From today's online New York Times 
photos, in memory of an Auschwitz photographer,
of a Polish Catholic victim of the Nazis —

In memory of the victims of Leon Jaroff, Paul Kurtz, and Martin Gardner
(see Halloween Special), an example— Gardner on Galois.

Today is Galois's birthday.

Bunker Bingo*

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:09 AM

Mathematics and Narrative continues…

IMAGE- In 'Downfall,' Hitler says that 'Steiner's assault will bring it under control.'

Steiner's version of "classical functional analysis"—

"Mein Führer Steiner"

IMAGE- Classical functional analysis according to Moscow State University

* See the story by Kilgore Trout. See also On Linguistic Creation,
   The Matrix of Abraham, and The Thoreau Foundation.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Grey Screen of Death

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:29 PM

For a mathematician who reportedly died on August 27

IMAGE- 'Mac for Dummies' from SNL 'Harlan Kane' sketch

"The Mac equivalent to a blue screen is a grey screen.
The info associated with a grey screen is in the kernel.log.
So you may have to look at this." 

See also Plan 9.

In a Nutshell

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM


"The yarns of seamen have a direct simplicity,
the whole meaning of which
lies within the shell of a cracked nut.
But Marlow was not typical
(if his propensity to spin yarns be excepted),
and to him the meaning of an episode
was not inside like a kernel but outside,
enveloping the tale which brought it out
only as a glow brings out a haze,
in the likeness of one of these misty halos
that sometimes are made visible by
the spectral illumination of moonshine."

— Joseph Conrad in Heart of Darkness


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:30 AM

Last night's quarter-to-three meditation
linked to one version of "Behind the Green Door."

For those who prefer less heavenly versions

Love Ghost

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 2:45 AM

Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story

is the title of an August 30, 2012, biography
of the late author David Foster Wallace. 
(See a Guardian  review.)

For example…

The Lovely Bones,  Telemark, and  Behind the Green Door.

“I have to break in my new suit
and limber up my muscles somehow,”
said Penny defensively. “One can’t
practice outdoors when there’s no snow.
Now watch this one, Mrs. Weems.
It’s called a telemark.”

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Labyrinth 23

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 7:00 PM

The title refers to a search (see below)
suggested by three things—

  1. David Foster Wallace biographer D. T. Max
    "There's a note in one of my files where he says something like,
    'Infinite Jest  was just a means to Mary Karr's end, as it were.' "

  2. "There is a body  on  the cross in my church ." —Mary Karr

  3. A body.

The search Labyrinth 23.

(Within the search results, note particularly the post "The Infinity Point.")

Operation Blue Moon

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:00 PM


The Lovely Bones

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:48 PM


"… and crown thy good with brotherhood…"

"The brothers are charged with murder,
conspiracy to commit murder,
disposing a body,
and tampering with evidence,
according to police."


Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:30 AM


A new Wikipedia page was created on Oct. 9—

"This page was last modified on 9 October 2012 at 19:54."

This, and a long-running musical, suggest…

"Try to remember the kind of September…"

LIFE Magazine for September 6, 1954, provides
one view of the kind of September when I was
twelve years old. (Also that September, Mitt Romney
was seven. President Obama was born later.)

Top of Life Magazine cover, September 6, 1954

This suggests James Joyce's nightmare view of history.

For some other views of 1954, see selected posts in this  journal
 that mention that year.

See also IMDb on Grace Kelly that year, and a related theological
reflection from Holy Cross Day, 2002.

Monday, October 22, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:55 PM


For some other remarks touching on religion
and politics, click on "Continued" above.

Halloween Special

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:21 PM

IMAGE- 'Two Pillars of Skepticism- Leon Jaroff and Paul Jurtz [sic] Died This Weekend

"Jurtz" is a typo for "Kurtz."

Mistah Kurtz—he dead.

IMAGE- First page of 'The Hollow Men' in Eliot's 'Complete Poems and Plays' (1952)

Follow the Ring

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:00 AM


From Penelope Green’s New York Times  story on Wednesday night’s Cooper-Hewitt design awards gala (links added)—

“Then Mr. Wurman went into full curmudgeon mode, fiddling with the two mikes on the podium and questioning the format of the night.

‘We should have talked to each other longer,’ he said. ‘This is the least interesting part.’

When he was done, Gloria Nagy, his wife, recalled how he had critiqued Mrs. Obama’s speech during the awards luncheon in July. (The Huffington Post reported Mrs. Obama as saying Mr. Wurman was ‘quite dashing and sassy.’) Ms. Nagy said Mrs. Obama had teased her by offering condolences and asking how she put up with her husband. In answer, Ms. Nagy said, she flashed what she called her Hazardous Duty Prize, a blindingly huge diamond ring.

Some designs work subtly. Others are successful through sheer force.”

Par exemple—

IMAGE- The Cartier diamond ring from 'Inside Man'

See also Cartier in this journal.

Design Awards Gala

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:06 AM

"The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum
held its design awards gala at Pier 60
in Manhattan on Wednesday night…."

Click on "gala" above for a New York Times  story.
Click on "Wednesday" above for a Log24 post.

A link from the latter may be viewed,
in retrospect, as honoring the late
Sylvia Kristel of the Netherlands, 
who reportedly died Wednesday.

The link is to an image of a webpage 
at the site Polen voor Nederlanders,
i.e., Poland for Netherlanders.

The Log24 post was titled Café Society.

Image from http://www.polenvoornederlanders.nl/ .

Sunday, October 21, 2012

A Song for Midnight

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:58 PM

Click image for the song.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:01 PM

In memory of Leonard Shlain, author
of The Alphabet Versus the Goddess

Alphabet logo from the website
of a religious publishing company—

A logo for Charlize Theron, who played
a goddess figure in "Hancock"—

Click images for further details.

For a Dead Editor*

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:21 PM

"I came by chance upon his tombstone,
a massive block of stone lightly covered
with fresh snow."

— Freeman Dyson on Wittgenstein,
     linked to here at 1 PM ET Saturday.

Cast a cold eye.

* Leon Jaroff, who reportedly died Saturday.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

IMAGE- The 3x3 ('ninefold') square as Chinese 'Holy Field'

     Click image above
     for some background.

IMAGE- Snow White Imprisoned- An image for the Snow Queen

IMAGE- Charlize Theron as Ravenna: 'She drifted.'

On the Cusp

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:09 PM

From St. Luke's Day, 2012—

Related material— October 9th and Father of the Bride.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:00 PM

"The fundamental unity of the Sequency and Simultaneity
points of view became plain; the concept of interval served
to connect the static and the dynamic aspect of the universe.
How could he have stared at reality for ten years and not
seen it? There would be no trouble at all in going on.
Indeed he had already gone on. He was there."

— Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed:
     An Ambiguous Utopia 

See also Joplin at the Lapin Blanc.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Annals of Cinema

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:25 PM

Surrender the Pinku —


Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:00 PM

Related material: "Wittgenstein on Jokes"— a query
at a philosophy weblog dated April 13, 2006— and posts here 
from that date collected  in memory of Muriel Spark.

’Round Midnight

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:20 AM


IMAGE- NY Times obituaries, 12:08 AM ET Sat., Oct. 20, 2012, with ad for feature on Nicole Kidman, and added correction on the date of death of a Catholic priest

Update of 1 AM Saturday—

On the late Frank Moore Cross, biblical scholar

"When you walked into his classes, you felt
you were on the frontier of knowledge in the field,"
said Peter Machinist, who studied under Dr. Cross
as an undergraduate at Harvard and now holds
the endowed professorship there that Dr. Cross
had held until his retirement in 1992.

For religious remarks from a different Machinist,
see a post of July 24, 2012

IMAGE- Poster for 'The Machinist' (2004), starring Christian Bale

Click link for a condition on the professorship that was
    apparently met by Cross, but that has perhaps not 
met by Machinist, a rather rabbinical figure.

Hexagram 20 Revisited

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 AM

Meditations for October 20 :

Box Style,  Wand Work, and  Bowling in Diagon Alley.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Inconvenient Art

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:00 PM

Barry Schwabsky in The Nation  on October 16, 2012:

"… sculpture is the most inconvenient of the fine arts.
Tedious physical labor is often involved in its making—
not necessarily the artist’s, but still, someone’s."

Happy Frigg's Day to Josefine Lyche.

Torpedo… LOS!

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:00 PM

"Hitchcock made movies with many actresses
who had the aloof, Nordic beauty he admired."

— Alessandra Stanley in today's NY Times

Aloof, Nordic…

Freeze Frame

IMAGE- Charlize Theron as Ravenna with raven in poster for 'Snow White and the Huntsman'

Related material:


Midnight Politics

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:00 AM

For Mitt 

See "A Deskful of Girls" in Fritz Leiber's Selected Stories .

See also the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene in 2009.

And for Clint

From "Deskful":

I quickly settled myself in the chair, not to be gingerly
about it. It was rather incredibly comfortable, almost
as if it had adjusted its dimensions a bit at the last
instant to conform to mine. The back was narrow at
the base but widened and then curled in and over to
almost a canopy around my head and shoulders.
The seat too widened a lot toward the front, where
the stubby legs were far apart. The bulky arms
sprang unsupported from the back and took my own
just right, though curving inwards with the barest
suggestion of a hug. The leather or unfamiliar plastic
was as firm and cool as young flesh and its texture
as mat under my fingertips.

"An historic chair," the Doctor observed, "designed
and built for me by von Helmholtz of the Bauhaus…."

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Story for St. Luke

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:01 PM

"When Death tells a story,
you really have to listen."

The Book Thief  (cover)

Box Office…

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:31 PM

Meets Holy Office

Philanthropic Numerology

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:01 AM

For St. Luke's Day

In memory of a philanthropist
who reportedly died last Sunday

Part I— A safe deposit box number from
the 2006 Denzel Washington film "Inside Man"—

IMAGE- Safe deposit box number 392

Part II—A related occurrence of the same number in
the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Part III— The 1998 Denzel Washington film "Fallen."

Part IV— The works of Octavia Butler
in particular, the character Doro in Wild Seed  (1980)
and Mind of My Mind  (1977).

Kirkus Reviews on the 1977 novel

"Butler is clearly on to a promising vein—
something like Zenna Henderson's 'People' stories
without their saccharine silliness."

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Café Society

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:00 PM

In honor of this year's Nobel Peace Prize
recipients, here are some remarks related
to European ethnicity:

Du Café

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:02 PM

From Three Colors: Blue 

Image-- Sugar cube in coffee, from 'Bleu'

Click image for some background.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Cube Review

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:00 PM

Last Wednesday's 11 PM post mentioned the
adjacency-isomorphism relating the 4-dimensional 
hypercube over the 2-element Galois field GF(2) to
the 4×4 array made up of 16 square cells, with
opposite edges of the 4×4 array identified.

A web page illustrates this property with diagrams that
enjoy the Karnaugh property— adjacent vertices, or cells,
differ in exactly one coordinate. A brief paper by two German
authors relates the Karnaugh property to the construction
of a magic square like that of Dürer (see last Wednesday).

In a similar way (search the Web for Karnaugh + cube ),
vertex adjacency in the 6-dimensional hypercube over GF(2) 
is isomorphic to cell adjacency in the 4x4x4 cube, with
opposite faces of the 4x4x4 cube identified.

The above cube may be used to illustrate some properties
of the 64-point Galois 6-space that are more advanced
than those studied by enthusiasts of "magic" squares
and cubes.


Those who prefer narrative to mathematics may
consult posts in this journal containing the word "Cuber."

Monday, October 15, 2012

Omega Point

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 PM

For Sergeant-Major America—

IMAGE- Art exhibition with 'Omega Point' and geometric figures related to tesseract, along with movie 'Captain America' figure

The image is from posts of Feb. 20, 2011, and Jan. 27, 2012.

This instance of the omega point is for a sergeant major
who died at 92 on Wednesday, October 10, 2012.

See also posts on that date in this journal—

Midnight,  Ambiguation,  Subtitle for Odin's Day,  and
Melancholia, Depression, Ambiguity.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"Mathematics is not the rigid and petrifying schema, as the layman so much likes to view it; with it, we rather stand precisely at the point of intersection of restraint and freedom that makes up the essence of man itself."

— A translated remark by Hermann Weyl, p. 136, "The Current Epistemogical Situation in Mathematics" in Paolo Mancosu (ed.) From Brouwer to Hilbert. The Debate on the Foundations of Mathematics in the 1920s , Oxford University Press, 1998, pp. 123-142, as cited by David Corfield

Corfield once wrote that he would like to know the original German of Weyl's remark. Here it is:

"Die Mathematik ist nicht das starre und Erstarrung bringende Schema, als das der Laie sie so gerne ansieht; sondern wir stehen mit ihr genau in jenem Schnittpunkt von Gebundenheit und Freiheit, welcher das Wesen des Menschen selbst ist."

— Hermann Weyl, page 533 of "Die heutige Erkenntnislage in der Mathematik" (Symposion  1, 1-32, 1925), reprinted in Gesammelte Abhandlungen, Band II  (Springer, 1968), pages 511-542

For some context, see a post of January 23, 2006.

Cameron vs. Galois

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 AM

IMAGE- Peter J. Cameron discusses 'ambiguity' in poety and in mathematics.

See Galois Ambiguity in this  journal.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Columbus Day Dream

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:00 PM

"… At the hour of vespers
in a sudden blinding snow,
they entered the harbor…."

— Jorie Graham,
"The Dream of the Unified Field"

Other snow dreams—

Master Class and

Pierre: Or, The Ambiguities.

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:02 AM

In memory of Copenhagen saxophonist John Tchicai,
who reportedly died last Sunday, October 7, 2012—

IMAGE- John Tchicai album 'Look to the Neutrino'

Quoted in this journal on the reported date of his death

IMAGE- NY Times review of 'Faust in Copenhagen'

But passion ever spins our plots,
And Gretchen is my treasure!

— Wolfgang Pauli character in
     Faust in Copenhagen

Related material—

"Physik als Quelle der Spiritualität:
Ein Weg von 'Gretchen' zurück zu 'Beatrice'?
by Bruno Binggeli

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Melancholia, Depression, Ambiguity

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 PM

Occurrences of the phrase "magic square" in Lowe-Porter's translation of the Thomas Mann novel Doctor Faustus

"On the wall above the  piano was an arithmetical diagram fastened with drawing-pins, something he had found in a second-hand shop: a so-called magic square, such as appears also in Dürer's Melancolia , along with the hour-glass, the circle, the scale, the polyhedron, and other symbols. Here as there, the figure was divided into sixteen Arabic-numbered fields, in such a way that number one was in the right-hand lower corner, sixteen in the upper left; and the magic, or the oddity, simply consisted in the fact that the sum of these numerals, however you added them, straight down, crosswise, or diagonally, always came to thirty-four. What the principle was upon which this magic uniformity rested I never made out, but by virtue of the prominent place Adrian had given it over the piano, it always attracted the eye, and I believe I never visited his room without giving a quick glance, slanting up or straight down and testing once more the invariable, incredible result."


"Adrian kept without changing during the whole four and a half years he spent in Leipzig his two-room quarters in Peterstrasse near the Collegium Beatae Virginis, where he had again pinned the magic square above his cottage piano."


" 'The decisive factor is that every note, without exception, has significance and function according to its place in the basic series or its derivatives. That would guarantee what I call the indifference to harmony and melody.' 

'A magic square,' I said. 'But do you hope to have people hear all that?' "


" 'Extraordinarily Dürerish. You love it. First "how will I shiver after the sun"; and then the houre-glasse of the Melancolia .  Is the magic square coming too?' "


"Here I will remind the reader of a conversation I had with Adrian on a long-ago day, the day of his sister's wedding at Buchel, as we walked round the Cow Trough. He developed for me— under pressure of a headache— his idea of the 'strict style,' derived from the way in which, as in the lied 'O lieb Madel, wie schlecht bist du ' melody and harmony are determined by the permutation of a fundamental five-note motif, the symbolic letters h, e, a, e, e-flat. He showed me the 'magic square' of a style of technique which yet developed the extreme of variety out of identical material and in which there is no longer anything unthematic, anything that could not prove itself to be a variation of an ever constant element. This style, this technique, he said, admitted no note, not one, which did not fulfil its thematic function in the whole structure— there was no longer any free note."

Review of related material— 

Last night's midnight post (disambiguation), the followup 1 AM post (ambiguation), today's noon post (ambiguity), and Dürer in this journal.

The tesseracts of the noon post are related to the Dürer magic square by a well-known adjacency property.

"… the once stable 'father's depression' has been transmuted into a shifting reality that shimmered in a multiplicity of facets."

Haim Omer, Tel-Aviv University, on Milanese ambiguation  therapy,
     p. 321 in "Three Styles of Constructive Therapy,"
     Constructive Therapies, Vol. 2 , pp. 319-333, 
     ed. by Michael F. Hoyt (Guilford Press paperback, 1998)

Subtitle for Odin’s Day

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

The subtitle of Jack Kerouac's novel Doctor Sax
is Faust Part Three.

Related material—

Types of Ambiguity— Galois Meets Doctor Faustus
(this journal, December 14, 2010).

See also tesseracts of Odin and of Galois.


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 1:00 AM

Wikipedia disambiguation page—

IMAGE- Wikipedia disambiguation page for 'Da Milano'

"When you come to a fork in the road…"

IMAGE- Alyssa Milano as a child, with fork

IMAGE- Ambiguation therapy in Milan

For another "shifting reality that shimmered
in a multiplicity of facets," see The Diamond Theorem.


Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM


A new Wikipedia disambiguation page for "Diamond theorem"—

History of the above new Wikipedia page—

See also a Google search for "diamond theorem."

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

It’s 10 PM

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:00 PM

(Continued from August 29.)

movies.broadwayworld.com, Friday, Oct, 5, 2012; 1:13 PM

"Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner, and Amy Adams will be joined by Christian Bale in David O. Russell’s ensemble drama….

The Untitled David O. Russell Project is based on the true story of a notorious financial con artist (Bale) and his mistress/partner in crime (Adams), who were forced to work with an out of control federal agent (Cooper) to turn the tables on other con artists, mobsters, and politicians."

For Amy

"Put on your red dress, baby
Ya know we're goin' out tonight
Put on your red dress, baby
Lord, we're goin' out tonight
And-a bring along some boxin' gloves
In case some fool might wanna fight"

Tommy Tucker

For East St. Louis

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

IMAGE- Learning from Miles Davis in the NY Times, 8:25 PM Oct. 9, 2012

See also Miles Davis in this journal and
the posts of Sunday, November 21, 2004.

"We’ll build in sonnets pretty roomes;
As well a well wrought urne becomes
The greatest ashes, as half-acre tombes."

— The Canonization*


* By John Donne. See also a piece by
  James Hillman that might have been
  titled Notes for Doctor Sax.

Too Much Meaning

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Last night’s post discussed ways of draining the world of meaning.

For some tastes, poets like Dante do the opposite, supplying too much  meaning.

See a New Republic  review, dated Oct. 5, in which Harvard atheist Helen Vendler discusses Dante’s

“… assertion that Beatrice herself  ‘was this number [nine],’ since nine is the square of three, the number belonging to the Trinity. Dante’s fantastic reasoning requires pages of annotation, which Frisardi, drawing on a number of commentators, furnishes to the bewildered reader. The theological elaboration of the number nine— merely one instance of how far from our own* are Dante’s habits of thought— will convince any doubting reader that the Vita Nuova  requires annotation far beyond what its pages might seem to demand.”

Related material— Ninefold in this journal, and remarks by Joseph Campbell in a post, Plan 9, from Sept. 5.

* Speak for yourself, Helen.

Monday, October 8, 2012

This Poet You’ve Snatched

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:09 PM

IMAGE- Oct. 7, 2012 post by Margaret Soltan with passages by Salinger on education and DeLillo on hat measurements

Some background from today's New York Times

IMAGE- Oct. 8, 2012, NY Times obituary for Vietnamese imprisoned poet

From DeLillo's novel Mao II  in  the paragraph immediately preceding
the Ritz-hat passage quoted by Soltan—

"He could have told George he was writing about the hostage to bring him back, to return a meaning that had been lost to the world when they locked him in that room. Maybe that was it. When you inflict punishment on someone who is not guilty, when you fill rooms with innocent victims, you begin to empty the world of meaning and erect a separate mental state, the mind consuming what's outside itself, replacing real things with plots and fictions. One fiction taking the world narrowly into itself, the other fiction pushing out toward the social order, trying to unfold into it. He could have told George a writer creates a character as a way to reveal consciousness, increase the flow of meaning. This is how we reply to power and beat back our fear. By extending the pitch of consciousness and human possibility. This poet you've snatched. His detention drains the world of one more thimble of meaning."

For related ways of draining the world of meaning, see the politically loaded leftist vocabulary of International Art English

IAE has a distinctive lexicon: aporia , radically , space , proposition , biopolitical , tension , transversal , autonomy . An artist’s work inevitably interrogates, questions, encodes, transforms, subverts, imbricates, displaces—though often it doesn’t do these things so much as it serves to, functions to, or seems to (or might seem to) do these things.  [Alix Rule and David Levine, July 30, 2012]

See also this evening's post Issue 16.

Issue 16

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , — m759 @ 8:14 PM

From triplecanopy, Issue 16 —

International Art English, by Alix Rule and David Levine (July 30, 2012)

… In what follows, we examine some of the curious lexical, grammatical, and stylistic features of what we call International Art English. We consider IAE’s origins, and speculate about the future of this language through which contemporary art is created, promoted, sold, and understood. Some will read our argument as an overelaborate joke. But there’s nothing funny about this language to its users. And the scale of its use testifies to the stakes involved. We are quite serious….*

Space  is an especially important word in IAE and can refer to a raft of entities not traditionally thought of as spatial (the space of humanity ) as well as ones that are in most circumstances quite obviously spatial (the space of the gallery ). An announcement for the 2010 exhibition “Jimmie Durham and His Metonymic Banquet,” at Proyecto de Arte Contemporáneo Murcia in Spain, had the artist “questioning the division between inside and outside in the Western sacred space”—the venue was a former church—“to highlight what is excluded in order to invest the sanctum with its spatial purity. Pieces of cement, wire, refrigerators, barrels, bits of glass and residues of ‘the sacred,’ speak of the space of the exhibition hall … transforming it into a kind of ‘temple of confusion.’”

Spatial and nonspatial space are interchangeable in IAE. The critic John Kelsey, for instance, writes that artist Rachel Harrison “causes an immediate confusion between the space of retail and the space of subjective construction.” The rules for space  in this regard also apply to field , as in “the field of the real”—which is where, according to art historian Carrie Lambert-Beatty, “the parafictional has one foot.” (Prefixes like para -, proto -, post -, and hyper – expand the lexicon exponentially and Germanly, which is to say without adding any new words.) It’s not just that IAE is rife with spacey terms like intersection , parallel , parallelism , void , enfold , involution , and platform …

* Footnote not in the original—
  See also Geometry and Death from the date of the above article.

Air America

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:00 AM

Related entertainment—

The song being performed in the above trailer 
for Air America  is "A Horse with No Name."

See  "Instantia Crucis" and "Winning."

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Faust at Harvard (For Bohr’s Birthday)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

Today's Harvard Crimson

Students Discuss Mental Health

In an effort to break the silence on an often-stigmatized topic,
members of the Harvard community gathered to share
experiences with mental illness through spoken word,
interpretive dance, and candid conversations at Friday night’s
second-annual “Words on the Mind” open mic night.

Related material from this  journal on Friday

The Hallowed Crucible

Some related symbolism (headings added Oct. 7)—



Applied Mathematics
(See Nov. 19, 2011.)

The Mind:


Pure Mathematics
(See Tesseract.)

Today's (Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012)  Google Doodle for Bohr's birthday—

  (See also Faust in Copenhagen in this journal)—

» more

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Black March

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:18 PM

Log24, Dec. 18, 2006:

“I did a column in Scientific American on minimal art,
and I reproduced one of Ed Rinehart’s [sic ] black paintings.”
— Martin Gardner,
Notices of the American Mathematical Society ,  June/July 2005

“… the entire profession has received a very public
and very bad black mark.”
— Joan S. Birman,
Notices of the American Mathematical Society ,  January 2007

Related posts— See "Bad Black Mark" in this journal.

See also two items from St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 2005—

Midnight Drums for Larry  and…

IMAGE- St. Patrick's Day 2005 talk at Columbia by John D. McCarthy

IMAGE- John D. McCarthy at Birman conference, March 15-20, 2005

Click McCarthy photo for some more recent material.

Red October, continued*

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:00 AM

"At Cambridge, where he studied in the 30s, he had
a reputation for omniscience. Running the local
Communist party cell from the set of college rooms
beneath Wittgenstein's, the youthful Hobsbawm was
invited to join the exclusive Apostles society."

Mark Mazower  in The Guardian , Oct. 1, 2012

* See related posts from Oct. 1, 2, and 5, 2012.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Where Madness Lies

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:29 PM

(Continued from Tuesday, Oct. 2)

From today's online New York Times

"The Schoenberg proved the highlight of the evening,
sandwiched between polished but otherwise routine
performances of Bach’s Keyboard Concerto No. 1
in D minor and Mozart’s Symphony No. 36 ('Linz'),
which ended the evening."

From a Wikipedia article— 

The Jew of Linz  is a controversial 1998 book by Australian writer Kimberley Cornish. It alleges that the Austrian philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein had a profound effect on Adolf Hitler when they were both pupils at the Realschule (lower secondary school) in Linz, Austria, in the early 1900s.

One section of the article—

No-ownership theory of mind
Other sections of the book deal with Cornish's theories about what he claims are the common roots of Wittgenstein's and Hitler's philosophies in mysticism, magic, and the "no-ownership" theory of mind. Cornish sees this as Wittgenstein's generalisation of Schopenhauer's account of the Unity of the Will, in which despite appearances, there is only a single Will acting through the bodies of all creatures. This doctrine, generalized to other mental faculties such as thinking, is presented in Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Essays". The doctrine, writes Cornish, was also held by the Oxford philosopher R. G. Collingwood who was one of Wittgenstein's electors to his Cambridge chair. Cornish tries to tie this to Wittgenstein's arguments against the idea of "mental privacy" and in conclusion says "I have attempted to locate the source of the Holocaust in a perversion of early Aryan religious doctrines about the ultimate nature of man". Cornish also suggests that Hitler's oratorical powers in addressing the group mind of crowds and Wittgenstein's philosophy of language and denial of mental privacy, are the practical and theoretical consequences of this doctrine.

See also Dreamcatcher in this journal.

The Elegant Fowl

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:29 PM

For the late Helen Nicoll

The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar,
"O lovely Pussy! O Pussy, my love,
What a beautiful Pussy you are, you are, you are,
What a beautiful Pussy you are."
Pussy said to the Owl "You elegant fowl,
How charmingly sweet you sing.
O let us be married, too long we have tarried;
But what shall we do for a ring?"

— Edward Lear

The Hallowed Crucible

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:19 AM


The Hallowed Crucible

Some related symbolism—


Applied Mathematics
(See Nov. 19, 2011.)


Pure Mathematics
(See Tesseract.)

See also Stallion Gate  (a novel) in this journal.

For some related nonfiction, see interviews with
Los Alamos physicist Robert F. Christy, who died
at 96 on Wednesday, October 3, 2012.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Kids Grow Up

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 6:29 PM

From an obituary for Helen Nicoll, author
of a popular series of British children's books—

"They feature Meg, a witch whose spells
always seem to go wrong, her cat Mog,
and their friend Owl." 

For some (very loosely) related concepts that
have been referred to in this journal, see…

Meg,  Mog,  and Owl.

See, too, "Kids grow up" (Feb. 13, 2012).

Big Bird

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:30 PM

The source: Subterranean Kerouac
The Hidden Life of Jack Kerouac ,
by Ellis Amburn, Macmillan, 1999

The Shining

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:01 PM


IMAGE- 'Obama camp fights to keep lead after Romney shines in debate'

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

’Round Midnight

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 AM

  The Pride of Lowell
IMAGE- Scenes from 'The Fighter'- Amy Adams, Christian Bale

  Some literary background— Doctor Sax

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Red October

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:00 PM


IMAGE- Klein-group picture by Rosalind Krauss in essay titled 'In the Master's Bedroom'

"In the master's bedroom, they gathered for the feast…."
— Suggested by the current film Hotel Transylvania

"For every kind of vampire, there is a kind of cross."
– Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow

Related material— the Feast of Saint Patrick in 2009.


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , — m759 @ 2:56 PM

“And how do we keep our balance?
That I can tell you in one word!”
Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof

“The object and characteristic of ‘traditions,’
including invented ones, is invariance.”
Eric Hobsbawm, introduction (link added)
to The Invention of Tradition

“Math is all about questions and answers.”
Prof. John D. McCarthy, Michigan State U.,
Monday afternoon, October 1, 2012

“Who knows where madness lies?”
Man of La Mancha
    (linked to here Monday morning)

Monday, October 1, 2012


Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:19 PM

"Self-evidently true and just"

The late Stephen Jay Gould
on a book by the late Barry Commoner.

Commoner reportedly died on Sunday.

Update of 5:42 PM ET—

Another academic death, this one from today—

» more


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 3:09 PM

IMAGE- 'Square Acquires a New York Design Firm' (NY Times, noon on October 1st, 2012)

» more

This, together with this morning's post involving the squares 16 and 9,
suggests a review of Conceit at Harvard (October 25, 2006), which
contains the following figure involving the squares 16, 9, and 25—

IMAGE- Right 3-4-5 triangle with squares on sides and hypotenuse as base

"If you have built castles in the air, 
your work need not be lost;
that is where they should be.
Now put the foundations under them.”

— Henry David Thoreau

High Definition

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:00 AM

IMAGE- Century 16 Theater, Aurora, CO, with ticket for House 9 on July 20, 2012

The international standard format of high-definition
television (HDTV) has an aspect ratio of 16:9.

Related material (click for clearer image)—

Some background — Where Madness Lies.

Powered by WordPress