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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Death of a Salesman

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

Yesterday's online LA Times  had an obituary for a
traveling salesman:

"Besides writing and teaching, Borg was a frequent speaker,
usually racking up 100,000 frequent flier miles a year.
He and Crossan, along with their wives, led annual tours
to Turkey to follow the path of the Apostle Paul and to give
a sense of his world. They also led tours to Ireland to
showcase a different brand of Christianity."

Borg and Crossan were members of the Jesus Seminar.
For Crossan, see remarks on "The Story Theory of Truth."

See also, from the date of Borg's death, a different salesman joke.

Some backstory —

"What we do may be small, but it has
a certain character of permanence."

— G. H. Hardy in A Mathematician's Apology

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

High Concept:

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 1:00 PM

The Dark Fields  Meet  The Big Seal .

Recall the punchline of Tuesday afternoon's post
on the 2012 film "Travelling Salesman" —

"What am I, the farmer's daughter?"

For background from the dark fields of the republic,
see a speech last night by Iowa Senator Joni Ernst.

Related material:

At the end of the 2012 film "Travelling Salesman,"
the main character holds up to the light a letter that has
at the top the presidential seal of the United States:

The camera pans down, and the character then
sees a watermark that echoes another famous seal,
from the U.S. one-dollar bill:

For related paranoia, see the novels of Dan Brown

as well as

See also Shema and Clocks Striking 13.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Big Seal

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

On Alice K. Turner, fiction editor at Playboy  magazine
for two decades, who reportedly died on Jan. 17:

"To have Alice publish a science-fiction story
of yours was a big seal of approval."

— Robert Silverberg, according to Turner's
    obituary by Emily Langer in yesterday evening's
    online Washington Post

Also from that obituary:

"Ms. Turner wrote a nonfiction and scholarly
book of her own, 'The History of Hell' (1993).
She professed that she did not believe in the
afterlife and described her book as a 'real
history of an imaginary place.' The erudite
work encompassed theology, art, literature
and history."

See as well this  journal on the date of Turner's death.

Purely Coincidental

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

"The character and events depicted in this
motion picture are fictitious. Any similarity
to actual persons, living or dead, is purely
coincidental."

— Ending credits of the 2012 film
      "Travelling Salesman"

From that film's introduction to the
main character:

"He is presently the Rouse Ball Professor
of Mathematics in the Department of
Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics
at Cambridge University and a fellow at
Trinity College. In 2008 he was awarded
the greatest honor in our profession
when he was presented with the Fields Medal
….
Ladies and gentlemen, it is with great honor
that I now present to you Dr. Timothy Horton."

See also

A line for a fellow of Trinity:

"What am I, the farmer's daughter?"

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