Displaying articles for: December 2013

The Golden Door

January 1: "We got to New York; we were so elated. We were so happy. We weren't screaming. The elation came from the heart."

 

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Beer & Beneficence

December 31: "... I told them how nothing they have read about Microsoft or Google compares with the way an Irish beer company cared for people when their grandparents were still young."

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'Mad Monk' Revisited

December 30: "Was he a man of God or just a crafty manipulator?... What was the secret of his appeal to women?"

 

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Solzhenitsyn’s Mission

December 28: "I have fulfilled my duty to those who perished. The truth about all this was doomed to perish -- they had tried to stifle it..."

 

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Mystery of Mysteries

December 27: "[W]e seem to be brought somewhat near to that great fact -- that mystery of mysteries -- the first appearance of new beings on this earth."

 

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Inanimate Subjects

December 26: "I leave my story at a point of disturbing symmetry: we seem determined to give human qualities to objects and content to treat each other as things."

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After the Fall

December 25: "The mighty Soviet army relinquishes an empire of subject republics without firing a shot."

 

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Wilde & the Scribes

December 24: "Who are these scribes who...sway with such serene incapacity the office which they so lately swept?"

 

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Art & Grace

December 23: "To me, what men and women can do with their hands and heads is often as beautiful as mountains and can be more so."

 

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Cryptic Craze

December 21: "Naturally, with this hobby in common, the young people saw a great deal of one another; for George was always looking in at the vicarage to ask her if she knew a word of seven letters..."

 

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Bayou Bargain

December 20: "Our confederacy must be viewed as the nest from which all America, North & South is to be peopled..."

 

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Lonely Victory

December 19: "I am at the lowest beatest ebb of my life, trapped by the police, 'retained in dismal places,' scorned and 'cheated' by my friends..."

 

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Winds of Change

December 18: "Religion, not nationalism or Arabism, is now the dominant force. God has returned to the Middle East."

 

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Saved by Scrooge

December 17: 'I have endeavoured in this Ghostly little book, to raise the Ghost of an Idea, which shall not put my readers out of humour..."

 

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Have You Heard...?

December 16: "Daphne: My dear Mrs Humbug how d'ye do? Oh! Fanny t'is all over."

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Maternity News

December 14: "I took my coffee into the dining room and settled down with the morning paper. A woman in New York had had twins in a taxi."

 

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Unpaid Debts

December 13: "When God sees us in this condition, he will rescue us from the infidel and the enemy."

 

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Birth of a Nation

December 12: "As the final bars of the British national anthem echoed around the arena, the Union flag was lowered."

 

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Ticking Away

December 11:  "Unfortunately, nature and the laws of physics cannot compromise -- they are what they are."

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Soul on Fire

December 10: "I had no Monarch in my life, and cannot rule myself, and when I try to organize -- my little Force explodes..."

 

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Anarchist Patriarch

December 9: "Idlers do not make history: they suffer it!"

 

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'Unknown' but Unforgotten

December 7: "He believed that once these graves were properly marked, then the Unknowns' former [shipmates] might visit them to lay flowers and pay their respects."

 

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Death of a Dream

December 6: "I watched him plant a weeping willow in the backyard. It seemed to symbolize his sorrow for the direction our country had taken."

 

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Sorry, No Trauma

December 5: "It's common these days for memoirs of childhood to concentrate on some dark secret within the author's ostensibly happy family.... Memoir in America is an atrocity arms race."

 

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Noir Father

December 4: "I had that trapped feeling, like some sort of a poor insect that you've put inside a downturned glass..."

 

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Chasing War

December 3: "There wasn't a high heroic face among them. They were all men intent on business."

 

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Through English Eyes

December 2: "Many a visitor to America has remarked on the astonishing gap between its politics and its people. The latter are for the most part far more congenial..."

 

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Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Poems That Make Grown Men Cry

And women too.  Luminaries from Colin Firth to Nick Cave and Jonathan Franzen chose the poems that bring them to tears, and the result is a stunning collection of poignant verse from writers like Auden, Whitman, Bishop, Larkin, Neruda and many others.  Warning: choking-up hazard.

The King of Pain

Trapped beneath his entertainment system, reality TV mastermind Rick Salter reflects on his life and tries to piece together the events of the previous evening. Seth Kaufman’s romp is an outrageous meditation on pain and entertainment in a deranged world in which the two are often interchangeable.

The Good Inn

Frank Black, frontman for the Pixies, has written a transgressive historical fiction with shades of Thomas Pynchon (focused as it is on the history of explosives and cinematic pornography), all set in a hallucinatory Edwardian Europe.