Monday, February 1, 2010

For St. Bridget’s Day

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:25 PM

"But wait, there's more!"
Stanley Fish, NY Times Jan. 28

From the editors at The New York Times who, left to their own devices, would produce yet another generation of leftist morons who don't know the difference between education and entertainment–

A new Times column starts today–


The quality of the column's logo speaks for itself. It pictures a cone with dashed lines indicating height and base radius, but unlabeled except for a large italic x to the right of the cone. This enigmatic variable may indicate the cone's height or slant height– or, possibly, its surface area or volume.

Instead of the column's opening load of crap about numbers and Sesame Street, a discussion of its logo might be helpful.

The cone plays a major role in the historical development of mathematics.

Some background from an online edition of Euclid

"Euclid proved in proposition XII.10 that the cone with the same base and height as a cylinder was one third of the cylinder, but he could not find the ratio of a sphere to the circumscribed cylinder. In the century after Euclid, Archimedes solved this problem as well as the much more difficult problem of the surface area of a sphere."

For Archimedes and the surface area of a sphere, see (for instance) a discussion by Kevin Brown. For more material on Archimedes, see "Archimedes: Volume of a Sphere," by Doug Faires (2001)– Archimedes' heuristic argument from mechanics that involves the volume of a cone– and Archimedes' more rigorous approach in The Works of Archimedes, edited by T. L. Heath (1897).

The work of Euclid and Archimedes on volumes was, of course, long before the discovery of calculus.  For a helpful discussion of cone volumes involving high-school-level calculus, see, for instance,  the following–


The Times editors apparently feel that
few of their readers are capable of
such high-school-level sophistication.

For some other geometric illustrations
perhaps more appealing than the Times's


dunce cap, see the symbol of
  today's saint– a Bridget Cross
and a web page on
visualized quaternions.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

After Gauss

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:44 PM

St. Bridget’s Cross

(Modulo Bridget)

“Well, she was just seventeen . . .”

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

The Harvest Conjecture

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:42 AM

From Harvest Moon Day, 2019

From yesterday —

From St. Bridget's Day, 2012 —

See also Hermann Weyl and T. S. Eliot on time. 

Monday, February 11, 2019

Better Call Saul

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:36 AM

"Christmas in February!" — SNL cold open, Feb. 9

Detail, online New York Times  front page,
Saint Bridget's Day (Feb. 1), 2013 —

IMAGE- NY Times market quotes, American Express Gold Card ad, Kevin Spacey in 'House of Cards' ad

See also Nietzsche and modal logic.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Art and Space…

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 6:00 AM

Continues, in memory of chess grandmaster Viktor Korchnoi,
who reportedly died at 85 yesterday in Switzerland —

IMAGE- Spielfeld (1982-83), by Wolf Barth

The coloring of the 4×4 "base" in the above image
suggests St. Bridget's cross.

From this journal on St. Bridget's Day this year —

"Possible title: 

A new graphic approach 
to an old geometric approach
to a new combinatorial approach
to an old algebraic approach
to M24

The narrative leap from image to date may be regarded as
an example of "knight's move" thinking.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Vocational Education

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:09 AM

This post was suggested by today's Harvard Crimson  story 
Protest at Primal Scream Leads to Chaotic Exchange.

Frederick Seidel in the September 3, 2012, New Yorker 

"Biddies still cleaned the student rooms."

IMAGE- Shower wall in 'Sunshine Cleaning'

Above, Amy Adams and Emily Blunt in 
"Sunshine Cleaning" (2008).

The Cleaner:

A scene from Bridget Fonda's "Point of No Return" (1993)
in a video uploaded six years ago on this date.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Ninth Year

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

A passage from the Benjamin Jowett translation of Plato's Meno

" 'For in the ninth year* Persephone sends the souls of those from whom she has received the penalty of ancient crime back again from beneath into the light of the sun above, and these are they who become noble kings and mighty men and great in wisdom and are called saintly heroes in after ages  .' The soul, then, as being immortal, and having been born again many times, and having seen all things that exist, whether in this world or in the world below, has knowledge of them all; and it is no wonder that she should be able to call to remembrance all that she ever knew about virtue, and about everything; for as all nature is akin, and the soul has learned all things; there is no difficulty in her eliciting or as men say learning, out of a single recollection all the rest, if a man is strenuous and does not faint; for all enquiry and all learning is but recollection."

* See this journal nine years ago, in August 2003.
 Jowett's note— "Pindar, Frag. 98 (Boeckh)"

Wikipedia authors like Protious, an alleged resident of Egypt and 
creator of The Socrates Swastika , may enjoy a less scholarly account:

From Babylon A. D.  (a 2008 film)— Toorop with Egyptian Sacred Scarab tattoo—           

— and Toorop with Aurora (who may be regarded as "the soul" in the Meno  passage above)—

Toorop's neck tattoo in the second image above is from a fictional book
described in the writings of H. P. Lovecraft.

As swastika-like sacred symbols go, I prefer St. Bridget's Cross.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Eve in the Garden

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:59 PM

"… he continued to make brief appearances
  on the show, including the one this past 
  New Year's Eve.* "

— Bruce Weber, New York Times

"The only stars Clark coveted
  for his show in those early years
  but could not get were
  the Beatles and Ricky Nelson…."

— Geoff Boucher, Los Angeles Times

"I don't know why you say goodbye"

"There was … magic in the air"

* The link is to another eve, Bridget's .

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Minimalist Whirl

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:29 PM

See St. Bridget's Cross

on the Web and in this journal.

Related material—

(Click images to enlarge.)

From Tablet  magazine on St. Bridget's Day, 2012—

From Tablet  magazine today—

Of greater secular  interest—

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Midnight in the Garden

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

(Continued from February 10.)

A passage suggested by the T.S. Eliot epigraphs in
Parallelisms of Compete Designs , by a weblog post
of Peter J. Cameron yesterday, and by this journal's
"Within You Without You" posts—

— Joseph Campbell, The Inner Reaches of Outer Space:
     Metaphor as Myth and as Religion ,
New World Library,
     Second Edition, St. Bridget's Day 2002, page 106

Monday, February 13, 2012

Ms. Lincoln

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:44 PM

Suggested by a USA Today  story on last night's Grammy ratings,
by the showmanship of Nicki Minaj, and by…

IMAGE- NY Times obit for 'Ms. Lincoln'

"Lincoln was one of many singers influenced by Billie Holiday." Wikipedia

Related material—

"Apart from that, Ms. Lincoln…"

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:16 PM

"Should we arbitrate life and death
at a round table or a square one?"

Wislawa Szymborska

See also the two previous posts,
Disturbing Archimedes and Tesseract.


IMAGE- Nobel-Prize-winning poet dies on St. Bridget's Day, 2012

Sunday, January 22, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:00 AM

Kindergarten Theology

(Log24, St. Bridget's Day, 2008)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Glass Slipper…

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM

For a Daughter of Hollywood


See also New Day Nina and Bridget and Nina.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

La Bruja

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:00 AM

A song for Bridget and Nina (see midnight's post).

Thursday, September 22, 2011

New Day Nina

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 1:06 AM

In memoriam


Bridget Fonda in "Point of No Return."  This is a 1993 remake of 1990's "La Femme Nikita ,"
virtually the same scene-by-scene, but with two nice new touches: the young assassin's code name
is Nina, after Nina Simone, and she happily shops as Simone sings "new day" in the soundtrack.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Midnight in the Garden (continued)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM

From Rough Magic , starring Russell Crowe and Bridget Fonda (1995)—

Bridget Fonda in 'Rough Magic'

Bridget brought her rabbits,
There was magic in the air…

— Adapted from "Garden Party"—

Can't please everyone, so you
Got to please yourself.

From The Chronicles of Narnia, Voyage of the Dawn Treader

"… Sometimes, perhaps, I am a little impatient, waiting for the day
when they can be governed by wisdom instead of this rough magic."

"All in good time, Coriakin," said Aslan.

"Yes, all in very good time, Sir," was the answer.

From Another Manic Monday (Feb. 21)—

We are now at the Year of the Rabbit

(Click images for sources.)

http://www.log24.com/log/pix11/110221-DarkoRabbitSm.jpg IMAGE- Scene from a film based on the old SF story 'Mimsy Were the Borogoves'

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Through the Blackboard

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:07 PM

Or: "Gopnik Meets Oppenheimer in Heaven"

(Or, for those less philosophically minded, "Raiders of the Lost Pussy")

Midrash on "A Serious Man"
by Steven Menashi at
The American Scene

"A Serious Man kicks off with a Yiddish-language frame story that takes place in a 19th-century Eastern European shtetl, where a married couple has an enigmatic encounter with an old acquaintance who may be a dybbuk," recounts Dana Stevens . "The import of this parable is cryptic to the point of inscrutability."

It seems to me that the Coen Brothers’ dybbuk is the Jewish folkloric equivalent of Schrodinger’s Cat .

When we first meet the main character, a physics professor named Larry Gopnik, he’s writing equations on the board: "So if that’s that, then we can do this, right? Is that right? Isn’t that right? And that’s Schrodinger’s paradox, right? Is the cat dead or is the cat not dead?" Likewise, we can’t know whether Fyvush Finkel [the aforementioned old acquaintance] is alive or a dybbuk. We can only evaluate probabilities. When a Korean student named Clive Park complains to Larry that he shouldn’t have failed the Physics midterm because "I understand the physics. I understand the dead cat," Larry says:

You can’t really understand the physics without understanding the math. The math tells how it really works. That’s the real thing; the stories I give you in class are just illustrative; they’re like, fables, say, to help give you a picture. An imperfect model. I mean— even I don’t understand the dead cat. The math is how it really works.

But the fable actually tells us that the math doesn’t capture reality.

The story in images below summarizes a meditation suggested by this parable and by

  1. Tuesday's post "Fish Story"
  2. Today's AP thought:
    "Open-mindedness is not the same as empty-mindedness." –John Dewey
  3. "Zen mind, empty mind."
  4. Today's NY Times obituary for Selma G. Hirsh,
    author of The Fears Men Live By (Harper, 1955).
    Hirsh died on St. Bridget's Day.
  5. A search for the Hirsh book that led to a web page
    with a 1955 review of J. Robert Oppenheimer's book The Open Mind
  6. A search for the Oppenheimer book that led to
    LIFE magazine's issue of Oct. 10, 1949
  7. "Satori means 'awakening.'" — TIME magazine, Nov. 21, 1960


Blackboard in "A Serious Man"–

Physicist accelerated against his blackboard in 'A Serious Man'


Blackboard at the Institute for Advanced Study–

J. Robert Oppenheimer at his blackboard

"Daddy's home! Daddy's home!"

(Click to enlarge.)

Oppenheimer homecoming, with ad for 'Pussy-Footer' alarm clock


Related material–

A Zen meditation from Robert Pirsig
is suggested by the time on the above
alarm clock– 8:20– interpreted,
surrealistically, as a date — 8/20.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wednesday July 15, 2009

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:09 AM
The Plot Thickens

Thanks to David Lavery
see previous entry— the
word for today is…
Cover of 'Zaddik,' a novel by David Rosenbaum

"As the story develops, an
 element of magical realism
 enters the picture."
Amazon review   

Related material:

For background on magical
realism, see the update to
today's previous entry.

See also
A Year of Magical Thinking
(June 6, 2009) and
the entries of May 19-22,
featuring Judy Davis in…

Poster for 'Diamonds' miniseries on ABC starting May 24, 2009

(Cf. St. Bridget's Day, 2003)

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sunday February 1, 2009

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 AM
"For every kind of vampire,
there is a kind of cross."
Gravity's Rainbow

Quaternion in finite geometry


Happy St. Bridget's Day.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Saturday May 24, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:48 AM
Time After Time

From the five entries ending
on St. Bridget's Day, 2008:

Dana R. Wright on James Edwin Loder, Jr.

"At his memorial service his daughter Tami told the story of 'little Jimmy,' whose kindergarten teacher recognized a special quality of mind that set him apart. 'Every day we read a story, and after the story is over, Jimmy gets up and wants to tell us what the story means.'"

"I confess I do not believe in time."
Nabokov, Speak, Memory

From May 20:
"Welcome to the
Garden Club, Pilgrim."

Related material:
Primitive Roots
and a video from
Perth, Australia:

Video remix of Alice in Wonderland from Perth, Australia

"The drum beats out of time"
— Song lyric, Cyndi Lauper  

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday May 23, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:07 PM

Happy St. Sarah‘s Day
(May 24)

“…something I once heard
Charles M. Schulz say,
‘Don’t worry about the world
coming to an end today.
  It’s already tomorrow
in Australia.'”

— William F. House, 
quoted here on Australia’s
St. Bridget’s Day, 2003

'Strictly Ballroom' video

Click on image to view video.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Thursday May 22, 2008

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 AM
The Undertaking:
An Exercise in
Conceptual Art

I Ching hexagram 54: The Marrying Maiden

Hexagram 54:

Undertakings bring misfortune.
Nothing that would further.

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix08/080522-Irelandslide1.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Brian O’Doherty, an Irish-born artist,
before the [Tuesday, May 20] wake
of his alter ego* ‘Patrick Ireland’
on the grounds of the
Irish Museum of Modern Art.”
New York Times, May 22, 2008    


Thus the superior man
understands the transitory
in the light of
the eternity of the end.

Another version of
the image:

Images of time and eternity in memory of Michelangelo
See 2/22/08
and  4/19/08.

Related material:

Michael Kimmelman in today’s New York Times

“An essay from the ’70s by Mr. O’Doherty, ‘Inside the White Cube,’ became famous in art circles for describing how modern art interacted with the gallery spaces in which it was shown.”

Brian O’Doherty, “Inside the White Cube,” 1976 Artforum essays on the gallery space and 20th-century art:

“The history of modernism is intimately framed by that space. Or rather the history of modern art can be correlated with changes in that space and in the way we see it. We have now reached a point where we see not the art but the space first…. An image comes to mind of a white, ideal space that, more than any single picture, may be the archetypal image of 20th-century art.”

An archetypal image


The Eightfold Cube: The Beauty of Klein's Simple Group

A non-archetypal image


Jack in the Box, by Natasha Wescoat

Natasha Wescoat, 2004
See also Epiphany 2008:

How the eightfold cube works

“Nothing that would further.”
— Hexagram 54

Lear’s fool:

 …. Now thou art an 0
without a figure. I am better
than thou art, now. I am a fool;
thou art nothing….

“…. in the last mystery of all the single figure of what is called the World goes joyously dancing in a state beyond moon and sun, and the number of the Trumps is done.  Save only for that which has no number and is called the Fool, because mankind finds it folly till it is known.  It is sovereign or it is nothing, and if it is nothing then man was born dead.”

The Greater Trumps,
by Charles Williams, Ch. 14

* For a different, Jungian, alter ego, see Irish Fourplay (Jan. 31, 2003) and “Outside the Box,” a New York Times review of O’Doherty’s art (featuring a St. Bridget’s Cross) by Bridget L. Goodbody dated April 25, 2007. See also Log24 on that date.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Saturday February 23, 2008

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

"An acute study of the links
between word and fact"
Nina daVinci Nichols

Thanks to a Virginia reader for a reminder:
Virginia /391062427/item.html? 2/22/2008 7:37 PM
The link is to a Log24 entry
that begins as follows…

An Exercise

of Power

Johnny Cash:
"And behold,
a white horse."

Springer logo - A chess knight
Chess Knight
(in German, Springer)

This, along with the "jumper" theme in the previous two entries, suggests a search on springer jumper.That search yields a German sports phrase, "Springer kommt!"  A search on that phrase yields the following:
"Liebe Frau vBayern,
mich würde interessieren wie man
mit diesem Hintergrund
zu Springer kommt?"

Background of "Frau vBayern" from thePeerage.com:

Anna-Natascha Prinzessin zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg 

F, #64640, b. 15 March 1978Last Edited=20 Oct 2005

     Anna-Natascha Prinzessin zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg was born on 15 March 1978. She is the daughter of Ludwig Ferdinand Prinz zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and Countess Yvonne Wachtmeister af Johannishus. She married Manuel Maria Alexander Leopold Jerg Prinz von Bayern, son of Leopold Prinz von Bayern and Ursula Mohlenkamp, on 6 August 2005 at Nykøping, Södermanland, Sweden.


The date of the above "Liebe Frau vBayern" inquiry, Feb. 1, 2007, suggests the following:

From Log24 on
St. Bridget's Day, 2007:

The quotation
"Science is a Faustian bargain"
and the following figure–


The 63 yang-containing hexagrams of the I Ching as a Singer 63-cycle

From a short story by
the above Princess:

"'I don't even think she would have wanted to change you. But she for sure did not want to change herself. And her values were simply a part of her.' It was true, too. I would even go so far as to say that they were her basis, if you think about her as a geometrical body. That's what they couldn't understand, because in this age of the full understanding for stretches of values in favor of self-realization of any kind, it was a completely foreign concept."

To make this excellent metaphor mathematically correct,
change "geometrical body" to "space"… as in

"For Princeton's Class of 2007"

Review of a 2004 production of a 1972 Tom Stoppard play, "Jumpers"–

John Lahr on Tom Stoppard's play Jumpers

Related material:

Knight Moves (Log24, Jan. 16),
Kindergarten Theology (St. Bridget's Day, 2008),

The image “My space -(the affine space of six dimensions over the two-element field
(Click on image for details.)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Wednesday February 20, 2008

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:48 AM
 About Five Years Ago:

M. V. Ramana on a famous quotation–
"Oppenheimer had learned Sanskrit at Berkeley so as to read the Gita in the original; he always kept a worn pink copy on the bookshelf closest to his desk. It is therefore likely that he may have actually thought of the original, Sanskrit, verse rather than the English translation. The closest that fits this meaning is in the 32nd verse from the 11th chapter of the Gita.

 kalosmi lokaksaya krt pravrddho

This literally means: I am kAla, the great destroyer of Worlds. What is intriguing about this verse, then, is the interpretation of kAla by Jungk and others to mean death. While death is technically one of the meanings of kAla, a more common one is time."

"KAla" (in the Harvard-Kyoto transliteration scheme) is more familiar to the West in the related form of Kali, a goddess sometimes depicted as a dancing girl; Kali is related to kAla, time, according to one website, as "the force which governs and stops time."  See also the novel The Fermata, by Nicholson Baker.

The fact that Oppenheimer thought of Chapter 11, verse 32, of the Gita may, as a mnemonic device, be associated with the use of the number 1132 in Finnegans Wake.

 See 1132 A. D. & Saint Brighid, and my weblog entries of January 5 (Twelfth Night and the whirligig of time), January 31 (St. Bridget's Eve), and February 1 (St. Bridget's Day), 2003

The custom-made asterisk
above may be regarded
as a version of
the "Spider" symbol
of Fritz Leiber.

Todo lo sé por el lucero puro
que brilla en la diadema de la Muerte

Rubén Darío

Related material:

The previous five entries
and the entries of
this date three years ago.

Time of this entry:

11:48:17 AM.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sunday February 11, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:56 AM
George Sadek, 78,
Graphic Design Educator,

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070211-GeorgeSadek.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Sadek died on Feb. 5.

Related material:

“Harvard Design” (Feb. 6),

“Geometry and Death”
(entries of December 2006)

“Release Date”
in “Immortal Diamond”
(Feb. 5 four years ago).

The design over Sadek’s
head is a St. Bridget’s cross.

(See the “Release Date”
link above.)

Sunday, August 6, 2006

Sunday August 6, 2006

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:00 PM
Game Boy
The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060806-Einsatz.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Click on picture for details.
"Nine is a very
powerful Nordic number
— Katherine Neville


to put one's back
into something
bei etwas
Einsatz zeigen
to up the ante
den Einsatz erhöhen
to debrief den Einsatz
nachher besprechen
to be on duty
im Einsatz sein
mil.to be in action im Einsatz sein
to play for
high stakes
mit hohem
Einsatz spielen



"His music had of course come from Russian folk sources and from Rimsky-Korsakov and from other predecessors, in the way that all radical art has roots. But to be a true modernist, a cosmopolitan in the twentieth century, it was necessary to seem to disdain nationalism, to be perpetually, heroically novel– the more aloof, the better. 'Cold and transparent, like an "extra dry" champagne, which gives no sensation of sweetness, and does not enervate, like other varieties of that drink, but burns,' Stravinsky said about his own Octet, Piano Concerto, and Piano Sonata. The description might be applied to works by Picasso or Duchamp."

— Michael Kimmelman in
  The New York Review of Books,
issue dated Aug. 10, 2006

But the description
certainly applies to
Bridget Moynahan:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060806-Recruit2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

"… like an 'extra dry' champagne,
which gives no sensation of
sweetness, and does not enervate."

For more on the
"Ice 9" figure, see
Balanchine's Birthday.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Saturday July 16, 2005

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

to the Dance of Kali:

  From Feb. 18, 2003

Fat Man and Dancing Girl

Dance of
Shiva and Kali

Paul Newman as
General Groves

From "The Bomb of the Blue God," by M. V. Ramana

11:32 —

kalosmi lokaksaya krt pravrddho

"This literally means: I am kala, the great destroyer of Worlds. What is intriguing about this verse, then, is the interpretation of kala by Jungk and others to mean death. While death is technically one of the meanings of kala, a more common one is time."

 See 1132 AD & Saint Brighid, and my 2003 weblog entries of January 5 (Twelfth Night and the whirligig of time), January 31 (St. Bridget's Eve), and February 1 (St. Bridget's Day).

The fact that Oppenheimer thought, on this date in 1945, of Chapter 11, verse 32, of the Gita may, as a mnemonic device, be associated with the use of the number 1132 in Finnegans Wake.

Related material for
Michael Flatley on his
July 16 birthday:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05A/050716-nataraj2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Shiva as Lord of the Dance

Michael and other Irish persons
may benefit from the film
"Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom"
as an introduction to
the Dance of Shiva and Kali.

On a more personal level:
Log24 entries of July 12 and July 13.

Sunday, February 1, 2004

Sunday February 1, 2004

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:07 AM

Note for St. Bridget's Day

Sunday, January 11, 2004

Sunday January 11, 2004

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

The Lottery

New York
Jan. 10, 2004

Midday:  720

Evening: 510

Jan. 10, 2004

Midday:  616

Evening: 201

What these numbers mean to me:

720: See the recent entries

Music for Dunne’s Wake,

720 in the Book, and

Report to the Joint Mathematics Meetings.

616 and 201:

The dates, 6/16 and 2/01,
of Bloomsday and St. Bridget’s Day.

510:  A more difficult association…

Perhaps “Love at the Five and Dime”
(8/3/03 and 1/4/04).

Perhaps Fred Astaire’s birthday, 5/10.

More interesting…

A search for relevant material in my own archives, using the phrase “may 10” cullinane journal, leads to the very interesting weblog Heckler & Coch, which contains the following brief entries (from May 19, 2003):

May you live in interesting times
While widely reported as being an ancient Chinese curse, this phrase is likely to be of recent and western origin.

Geometry of the I Ching
The Cullinane sequence of the 64 hexagrams”

“… there are many associations of ideas which do not correspond to any actual connection of cause and effect in the world of phenomena….”

— John Fiske, “The Primeval Ghost-World,” quoted in the Heckler & Coch weblog

“The association is the idea”

— Ian Lee on the communion of saints and the association of ideas (in The Third Word War, 1978)

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Tuesday February 18, 2003

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

Fat Man and Dancing Girl


Dance of
Shiva and Kali

Paul Newman as
General Groves


Physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, portrayed in the film "Fat Man and Little Boy," died on this date in 1967.

He is sometimes called the "father of the A-bomb."  He said that at the time of the first nuclear test he thought of a line from the Sanskrit holy book, the Bhagavad Gita: "I am become death, the destroyer of worlds."  The following gives more details.

The Bomb of the Blue God

M. V. Ramana

Center for Energy and Environmental Studies, Princeton University

Published in SAMAR: South Asian Magazine for Action and Reflection, Issue 13

Oppenheimer had learned Sanskrit at Berkeley so as to read the Gita in the original; he always kept a worn pink copy on the bookshelf closest to his desk. It is therefore likely that he may have actually thought of the original, Sanskrit, verse rather than the English translation. The closest that fits this meaning is in the 32nd verse from the 11th chapter of the Gita.

 kalosmi lokaksaya krt pravrddho

This literally means: I am kAla, the great destroyer of Worlds. What is intriguing about this verse, then, is the interpretation of kAla by Jungk and others to mean death. While death is technically one of the meanings of kAla, a more common one is time.  Indeed, the translations of the Gita by S. Radhakrishnan, A. C. Bhaktivedanta, Nataraja Guru and Eliot Deutsch say precisely that. One exception to this, however, is the 1929 translation by Arthur Ryder. And, indeed, in a 1933 letter to his brother, Robert Oppenheimer does mention that he has "been reading the Bhagavad Gita with Ryder and two other Sanskritists." The misinterpretation, therefore, may not have been the fault of Oppenheimer or Jungk. Nevertheless, the verse does not have anything to do with an apocalyptic or catastrophic destruction, as most people have interpreted it in connection with nuclear weapons. When kAla is understood as time, the meaning is drastically changed to being a reminder of our mortality and finite lifetimes ­ as also the lifetimes of everything else in this world (including plutonium and uranium, despite their long, long, half-lives!). It then becomes more akin to western notions of the "slow march of time" and thus having little to do with the immense destruction caused by a nuclear explosion. While the very first images that arose in the father of the atomic bomb are a somewhat wrong application of Hindu mythology, his recollection of the Bhagavad Gita may have been quite pertinent. As is well known, the Bhagavad Gita was supposedly intended to persuade Arjuna to participate in the Kurukshetra battle that resulted in the killing of thousands. Thus, Oppenheimer may well have been trying to rationalize his involvement in the development of a terrible weapon.

Source: Google cache of

See also
"KAla" (in the Harvard-Kyoto transliteration scheme) is more familiar to the West in the related form of Kali, a goddess sometimes depicted as a dancing girl; Kali is related to kAla, time, according to one website, as "the force which governs and stops time."  See also the novel The Fermata, by Nicholson Baker.

The fact that Oppenheimer thought of Chapter 11, verse 32, of the Gita may, as a mnemonic device, be associated with the use of the number 1132 in Finnegans Wake.

 See 1132 A. D. & Saint Brighid, and my weblog entries of January 5 (Twelfth Night and the whirligig of time), January 31 (St. Bridget's Eve), and February 1 (St. Bridget's Day), 2003.

Saturday, February 1, 2003

Saturday February 1, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:10 AM

Time and Eternity


Kali figure

Shiva figure




Yesterday’s meditation on St. Bridget suggests the above graphic summary of two rather important philosophical concepts. Representing Kali, or Time, is Judy Davis in “The New Age.” Representing Shiva, or Eternity, is sword-saint Michioka Yoshinori-sensei.  The relationship between these two concepts is summarized very neatly by Heinrich Zimmer in his section on the Kalika Purana in The King and the Corpse.

The relationship is also represented graphically by the “whirl” of Time and the “diamond” of Eternity.

On this day in 1944, Mondrian died.  Echoes of the graphic whirl and diamond may be found (as shown above) in his “Red Mill” and “Victory Boogie-Woogie.”

Friday, January 31, 2003

Friday January 31, 2003

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 6:20 PM

Irish Fourplay

"…something I once heard Charles M. Schulz say, 'Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia.'"

 — William F. House

"Forewarned is four-armed."

— Folk saying


The painting at left is by Mary B. Kelly, a 1958 graduate of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College.

Kelly is an expert on portrayals of Goddess figures in art

Today in Australia is February First, the feast of St. Bridget.  As several websites note, St. Bridget is a combination of Christian saint and Goddess figure… rather like St. Sara (patron saint of Gypsies, also known as Kali) or like Sara Pezzini in the classic TV series "Witchblade."

"Aww… Irish foreplay."

— Sara Pezzini in Witchblade, Episode 6

"Mighty in the gift of purity
She was pleasing unto the Bridegroom on high."

Song of St. Bridget

"Brace yourself, Bridget."

— Definition of Irish foreplay


Saint Bridget's Cross:

Four people can form this cross by joining hands as shown.  Of course, a Goddess like Kali (shown above) or Sara Pezzini could do it all by herself.


For futher details, see The Swastika Goddess,  the history of Jews and the Roman Catholic Church, and the history of Irish neutrality in World War II.

Postscript  of 11 PM

The Goddess Bridget in Literature

The Goddess Bridget (or Brigid) is incarnated in two classic works of American literature —

  • The American patriot and Communist Party supporter Dashiell Hammett gave an unflattering portrayal of Brigid (O'Shaughnessy) in The Maltese Falcon.  For a Jungian analysis of the relationship between Sam Spade and Brigid, see the perceptive remarks of Ryan Benedetti:

"In Jungian terms, Brigid becomes a projection of Spade's anima, a contrasexual replica of his own face as expressed in someone of the opposite sex.

Spade wears a variety of masks in his work. Masking allows him to get underneath the scam most clients lay on him. He is closer to the darker side of his unconscious than any of the other characters in the book, and he is so, because of his role as shamus. His function in his society is to expose all of the underlying darkness of the human psyche."

One way of looking at animus and anima is through the following archetypes:

A diamond and its dual "whirl" figure —
or a "jewel-box and its mate"

  • Mark Twain, in Life on the Mississippi, describes the way Goddess Bridget (again, O'Shaughnessy) arranged the conveyance of her late husband to the next world:

 "D'ye mane to soy that Bridget O'Shaughnessy bought the mate to that joo-ul box to ship that dhrunken divil to Purgatory in?"

"Yes, madam."

"Then Pat shall go to heaven in the twin to it, if it takes the last rap the O'Flaherties can raise!"

Wednesday, January 8, 2003

Wednesday January 8, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:17 PM

In the Labyrinth of Memory

Taking a cue from Danny in the labyrinth of Kubrick’s film “The Shining,” today I retraced my steps.

My Jan. 6 entry, “Dead Poet in the City of Angels,” links to a set of five December 21, 2002, entries.  In the last of these, “Irish Lament,” is a link to a site appropriate for Maud Gonne’s birthday — a discussion of Yeats’s “Among School Children.”

Those who recall a young woman named Patricia Collinge (Radcliffe ’64) might agree that her image is aptly described by Yeats:

Hollow of cheek as though it drank the wind
And took a mess of shadows for its meat

This meditation leads in turn to a Sept. 20, 2002, entry, “Music for Patricias,” and a tune familiar to James Joyce, “Finnegan’s Wake,” the lyrics of which lead back to images in my entries of Dec. 20, 2002, “Last-Minute Shopping,” and of Dec. 28, 2002, “Solace from Hell’s Kitchen.”  The latter entry is in memory of George Roy Hill, director of “The Sting,” who died Dec. 27, 2002.

The Dec. 28 image from “The Sting” leads us back to more recent events — in particular, to the death of a cinematographer who won an Oscar for picturing Newman and Redford in another film — Conrad L. Hall, who died Saturday, Jan. 4, 2003. 

For a 3-minute documentary on Hall’s career, click here.

Hall won Oscars for “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and “American Beauty,” and may win a posthumous Oscar for “Road to Perdition,” last year’s Irish-American mob saga:

“Tom Hanks plays Angel of Death Michael Sullivan. An orphan ‘adopted’ by crime boss John Rooney (Paul Newman), Sullivan worships Rooney above his own family. Rooney gave Sullivan a home when he had none. Rooney is the father Sullivan never knew. Too bad Rooney is the

Rock Island
branch of Capone’s mob.”

In keeping with this Irish connection, here is a set of images.

American Beauty
© Suzanne Harle 1997

Conrad L. Hall


A Game of Chess

I need a photo-opportunity.
I want a shot at redemption.
Don’t want to end up a cartoon
In a cartoon graveyard.
— Paul Simon

“Like a chess player, he knows that to win a tournament, it is sometimes wise to offer a draw in a game even when you think you can win it.”

Roger Ebert on Robert Duvall’s character in “A Civil Action”

Director Steven Zaillian will take part in a tribute to Conrad L. Hall at the Palm Springs International Film Festival awards ceremony on Jan 11.  Hall was the cinematographer for Zaillian’s films “A Civil Action” and “Searching for Bobby Fischer.” 

“A Civil Action” was cast by the Boston firm Collinge/Pickman Casting, named in part for that same Patricia Collinge (“hollow of cheek”) mentioned above.

See also “Conrad Hall looks back and forward to a Work in Progress.”  (“Work in Progress” was for a time the title of Joyce’s Finnegans Wake.)

What is the moral of all this remembrance?

An 8-page (paper) journal note I compiled on November 14, 1995 (feast day of St. Lawrence O’Toole, patron saint of Dublin, allegedly born in 1132) supplies an answer in the Catholic tradition that might have satisfied Joyce (to whom 1132 was a rather significant number): 

How can you tell there’s an Irishman present
at a cockfight?
     He enters a duck.
How can you tell a Pole is present?
     He bets on the duck.
How can you tell an Italian is present?
     The duck wins.

Every picture tells a story.

Hall wins Oscar for “American Beauty”


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