• Green Scarf Dispatch Company

Weekend 212.0 (“time stays around us like pools of color”)

(1) The Pursuit of Presence (WSJ)

“All of his poems are inextricably linked to the places where they were written. For much of his adult life, Mr. Bonnefoy spent his summers with his wife in an abandoned monastery in Provence.”

It’s snowing.
Under the flakes, a door opens at last
On the garden beyond the world. Green Scarf Dispatch Company
I set out. But my scarf
Snags on a rusty nail,
And the cloth of my dreams is torn.
(“The Garden,” 1991)

(2) A Penchant for Dreaming (WSJ)

“Burne-Jones was a founding partner of Morris’s design company in 1861. His specialty was stained-glass windows and tapestries—he did the figures while Morris handled the borders—but over the years he also designed jewelry, illustrated books and made mosaics. All done while continuing his own career as painter and watercolorist. He may have loathed his own age, Ms. MacCarthy notes, but he possessed its work ethic…The purpose of art, for him, is to be a refuge from the coarseness of the industrial world.”

(2a) Fancy some DISNEY MAGIC? (The Moment of Truth Concept Art for The Sword in…)

(3) The glorious sword of authority was given by Lord, / Poems and books are evidences that praise Yahweh in front of Him. / Taiping unifies the World of Light. – Hong Xiuquan

(4) “Light is the measure of everything. It is absolute, mathematical, physical, eternal. There is an absolute speed to it, you can’t outrun it; that’s what the theory of relativity is about. Stand here and remember what you can. What you remember is in light, the rest is in darkness, isn’t it? The past fades to dark, and the future is unknown, just stars.” – Daniel Libeskind


Anime Download

(1) Animator Looks to Break Through: Pixar’s John Lasseter Aims to Help Japanese Maker of ‘Arrietty’ Reach Broader Group in The U.S. (WSJ)

(2) Anime Queue: East of Eden // Last Exile // Clannad

Weekend 211.2

Text from a friend completely disinterested in sports:

“So I know I’m taking a long shot here, but I’m thinking the Schenectady Land Beavers are going to win the Super Bowl today over the New Hampshire Wild Goats.”

Weekend 211.1 (Man is the measure…)

landscape“But to me they were living and the turf that covered them was a skin, under which their muscles rippled, and I felt that those hills had called with incalculable force to men in the past, and that men had loved them. Now they sleep–perhaps for ever. They commune with humanity in dreams. Happy the man, happy the woman, who awakes the hills of Wessex. For though they sleep, they will never die.” – E.M. Forster, The Machine Stops

“Many people are fascinated by the course of the subterranean rivers; they track them, sometimes with maps and sometimes with dowsing rods, seeking for the life under ground. They pursue them as far as they can through uncompromising surroundings of council blocks or shopping malls or derelict plots of marshy land. On stretches of their route the outer world is in mourning for its lost companion. A verse from Job may act as a summary: ‘Even the waters forgotten of the foot: they are dried up, they are gone away from men.’

The river walkers pace their journey slowly, recreating a sense of time that has been lost in the contemporary city–or perhaps time is altered by the presence of the buried river. It may follow the speed of the water beneath the ground. Time itself does not matter in the presence of the lost river.” – Peter Ackroyd, London Under: The Secret History Beneath the Streets

Weekend 211.0 (Some break the rules, and live to count the cost)

(1) Fully Booked: Architect Annabelle Selldorf decodes the Morgan Library’s lofty design (WSJ)

(2) Life With and Without Tradition (WSJ)

(a) “The story is a cleverly constructed parable about the collision of orthodoxy and modernity, and it illustrates the author’s most rewarding themes: the emptiness of living without traditions and the perils of stubbornly clinging to them.”

(b) “We see his characters aggressively mapping their destinies, but we also know that, in the novel’s larger scope, every action is subject to the humbling forces of time and chance.”

(3) The Master Builder of Towers of Flowers (WSJ)

(4) Quote from E.M. Forster

“Only connect, and the beast and the monk, robbed of the isolation that is life to either, will die.”

(5) The Karakuwa House – The perfect monk house? It’s called the gassho which means praying hands.

(6) Quote from Frederick Crews on E.M. Forster

“The landscapes in his novels have an almost pantheistic vitality, and they are usually enlisted on the side of self-realization for the central characters. To be attuned to the spirit of the countryside is not simply to resist the shallowness of London, but to be awake to the full life of the senses, without which there is no real awakening of the soul.”

(7) Another quote from The Architecture of Happiness by Alain de Botton

“A second compelling claim was made for the visual when the early theologians speculated that it might be easier to become a faithful servant of God by looking than by reading. They argued that mankind could more effectively be shaped by architecture than by Scripture. Because we were creatures of sense, spiritual principles stood a better chance of fortifying our souls if we took them in via our eyes rather than via our intellect. We might learn more about humility by gazing at an arrangement of tiles than by studying the Gospels, and more about the nature of kindness in a stained-glass window than in a holy book. Spending time in beautiful spaces, far from a self-indulgent luxury, was deemed to lie at the core of the quest to become an honorable person.

Weekend 210.1

ritratto pietra

(1) The War Without a Loser (WSJ)

(2) Olympics fever will help to make 2012 the year of the bike

(3) Colouroids // Illustrations by Kevin Dart

(3a) The Art & Illustration of Kevin Dart

Weekend 210.0

Bike ChainFirst ride of 2012! It was mostly an excuse to test the installation of a Brooks Flyer Saddle. I rode to the post office and stopped for coffee.

I had a copy of the Wall Street Journal in the basket which I retrieved from the end of the driveway before my ride. I thought about taking a picture of it in the basket and titling this post, “Green & Pro Business” but my legs felt like rubber and the camera was upstairs (awful, right???). I did commit to stamping correspondence with a bike to indicate it was delivered to the post office using ‘my old rubber legs’ and now a trip to the Great American Stamp Store (local retail) is in the offing.

The bike itself though is a good pro business metaphor (a contemporary version of the pencil) and it all begins with a humble and brilliant artisan like Mike Flanigan of A.N.T. and an idea.

But there is also another dynamic at work in this metaphor and that is the venerable history of Brooks England which has endured since 1866 despite being subjected to the creative destruction of capitalism.

It’s a tough lesson but prior success (market share, profitability, etc.) doesn’t guarantee survivability in perpetuity. I love Lehmann Gross Bahn but a myriad of factors resulted in their decline. And the government could have intervened with a bail out or offered subsidies BUT none of that would have offset changing market conditions. Additionally, precious resources would have been restricted from finding their most efficient and productive use despite some period of displacement.

Unfortunately what persists in this country now is a perversion of free markets (crony capitalism) where government is choosing winners and losers for political gain (self-preservation). The theater is cute – Warren’s secretary at the SOTU – but all sorts of companies are benefiting from these government-driven perversions (see related) and it’s a ‘stick in the spokes’ to honest and hard-working entrepreneurs (job creators).

This post seems SO juvenile but I’ve spoken at length with college educated people who were never taught common sense economics.

Buffett’s Burlington Northern Among Pipeline Winners
Solyndra Not Sole Firm to Hit Rock Bottom Despite Stimulus Funding
A.N.T. Open House: Lovely Bicycle Sightings

Weekend 209.2 (Pretty Dress)

The proprietor of Limestone Roof doesn’t want to stay a monk forever and is prone to look at pretty dresses from time-to-time (and not for myself) AND the Bike Lane Dress from Antropolgie is gorgeous.

There are days when solitude is a heady wine which intoxicates you with freedom, others when it is a bitter tonic, and still others when it is a poison. – Colette

Weekend 209.1 (Tires/Tyres)

Yeah. I’ve added a category for tires/tyres because of my obsession with vulcanized rubber. Photographs of tires/tyres for me are like hi-res food shots to foodies.

I watched Tokyo Story last night and Noriko [Setsuko Hara] was employed by the Yoneyama Trading Company whose business was tires apparently (?).

Yasujiro Ozu's Tokyo Story

Speaking of pron; here is some new bike pron! The first is an illustration/drawing by Scott White from Bermuda Journey. The second is from another movie with Setsuko Hara called Late Spring.

(1) Get-Tough Policy on Chinese Tires Falls Flat (WSJ)

(1a) The reincarnation of the Playmobil Classic Car (6240) with accompanying tire pron!

This has nothing to do with tires but was part of my weekend reading:

(2) Boardroom Conquerors (WSJ)

“The good life, Mr. Kluth suggests, is not to be found by trying to imitate those we consider leaders and successes, who are rarely all they seem. It consists of doing what we must, as well as we are able, perceptions and consequences be damned.”

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