One Touch Football – A Retrospective

Finding my piece on Glasgow Celtic unexpectedly archived on One Touch Football has set me thinking about my time on that forum. A little Googling this evening has revealed lots more of my musings are still there, and furthermore that I was an active poster much later than I thought – I will still at up til early 2008 whereas memory had told me I stopped around 2006 after a few years of desultory posting from 2004 or so.

I had three main noms du messageboard – FC Bollywood, Norm Chomsky and Melmoth The Wonderer. My pattern was certainly to start threads that no one, or very few people replied to  although my quest for The Most Beautiful German Word was an exception.

Looking at this list of threads I began  is like reading an old diary. There are lots of thoughts I had I had totally forgotten:

 

For instance:

Melmoth the Wonderer
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Thinking the other day about how “Mumbai” and “Beijing” have become all but universal, it struck me that English has radically different names for German (Munich, Cologne) and Italian (Naples, Florence, Venice, Leghorn [I mean, Leghorn!] but not French cities – I may be wrong, but Geneva aside the English and French names for French/Francophone places seem to be same. (not sure about Spain)

Why? And why, then, “Londres” and “Edimborough” (and no other English placenames in French, AFAIK?)


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And this nil thread highlights another theme – books I have forgotten I’ve read, websites I have forgotten ever existed:

Melmoth the Wonderer
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One of my sidelines is abstracting (basically) ophthalmolgy books. The latest is this. It turns out that

quote:


Despite the tremendous importance of technologically advanced blade engineeringo the the performance of precise microsurgery, there is a dearth of published information regarding the design of surgical blades. A search of PubMed reveals no articles that explore the basics of surgical blade design. Therefore, we used the follow resources to identify the terms relevant to the understanding surgical blade design. The references are not cited in the text because the terms discussed can be categorised as general knowledge rather than original concepts or ideas


They go on to list various websites, mainly belonging to surgical blade production companies, but including this Which I highly recommend, although I have yet to find anything relevant to surgical blade design. Nice pic of Aragon, eh?

Although the article on blind martial artists may be of some ophthalmological interest, I guess.

Who can resist the authors Reflections on Cold Steel and Machined Weapons ?:

quote:


There is no doubt that human beings have always developed and tented to achieve more and more. Partly it is because of the need; partly it is the concurrence. Anyway, it is a natural tendency!


which includes the immortal question:

quote:


Dilemma – which weapons are better: blades or guns?


Not as straightforward a question as you might imagine


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I consider research centres with particularly grandiose names:

Author Topic: research centres with particularly grandiose names
Melmoth the Wonderer
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After reading this and this and following the link to the science-fictionish sounding Future of Humanity Institute, I got to thinking about the sheer grandiosity of modern academia. These institutes (as the blogger observes, “I couldn’t find a research institute devoted to making people unhappy”) are just the tip of the iceberg. Presumably this is a function of the corporatisation of the whole academic enterprise – everything must sound like not only might it lead to something vaguely interesting from a research point of view, but that THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD is at stake….


 

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And contemplate possibly the worst painting of all time:

 

huntwh5

Sometimes I just talked to myself

 

Author Topic: A not entirely modest undertaking
Melmoth the Wonderer
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quote:


The article, “A Business-Relevant View of Human Nature”,” provides a new theory of human nature, and aims to bring it to the center of our understanding of business, or commerce, creating a strong foundation for new business and economic principles and practices. The article has three parts. In the first section, the author identifies and discusses the fundamental drives that characterize all forms of life. Building upon these findings, he then develops the unique view of human nature in the second section. Finally, in the last section, he highlights the new perspectives on business that can be generated with the help of the new theory of human nature.


via here (and subject line stolen from there also)


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Melmoth the Wonderer
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there’s something of Goethe’s Faust about the new theory of human nature – there’s a whole lotta strivin’ going on, from “All living things strive to perceive the composition of their environment” to “All living things strive to remember the changes that occur within their
environment”


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Perhaps I’ll call a halt there for tonight – this narcissistic exercise could get quite addictive….although I will leave this post with a record of my strong dislike of the work of Arthur Miller (I’m sure he was a delightful man):

Melmoth the Wonderer
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Based on my extensive study of The Crucible and Death of a Saleman in school, and a student production of All My Sons (or was it A View From The Bridge? Titles weren’t his strong suit, were they?) I believe Arthur Miller to be one of the most over rated “classic” dramatists of all time, largely renowed because he proved, by getting hitched to Marilyn, that intellectuals could score hot chicks every so often.

Actually my ire isn’t so much aimed at The Crucible, which, once seen on stage rather than via wading through Miller’s interminable stage directions and pompous asides, is a fine piece of dramatic work, with subtle character development and a much more nuanced view of the community it portrays than generally supposed. It’s aimed at Death of a Salesman – and to a lesser degree A View From The Bridge (or was it All My Sons?)

Death of a Salesman must be one of the least subtle plays of all time. I mean, those character names. Biff! Willy Loman! (get it? Lo-man. Low man! Deep, eh?) Happy! We spent hours in school discussing how all these names, um, represented things. “Biff” signifies conflict, y’know?

And the whole self-congratulatory Greenwich Village snootiness towards commerce and sales it embodies and exudes. Even if you spend your days happily smashing up Starbucks and McDonald’s, you must want to throw up or burst out laughing at the portentous, self-important dialogue, in which the clumsiest possible assault on the values of American capitalism is mounted – sort of like throwing honey at a Sherman tank, and congratulating yourself on your brave resistance.

And all that heavy weather about being “well liked” – a phrase Miller has his characters beat to death just like O’Neill had Hickey repeat the words “pipe dream” again and again and again and again just in case anyone in the audience who had fallen asleep (everyone, in the case of O’Neill’s interminable borefests) woke up and wanted to know what the theme of the whole thing was.

“Death of a Salesman” is the mirror image of another trite, obvious play with cardboard cutout characters – “Twelve Angry Men” Miller’s fame deserves to rest at the same level as the guy who wrote that – go on, like you know without looking it up.

David Denby wrote in a review of Magnolia that “Despite the prologue, the main body of the film is not as radical as I imagine Anderson would like to think. Most of it is fairly commonplace, Arthur Miller-type stuff about how you can’t escape the past, you can’t escape the evil you’ve done, and what we all really need is to be truthful with one another.”

And that’s the thing. Arthur Miller is full of “commonplace, Arthur Miller-type stuff” along those lines – solid and well-crafted perhaps, but also obvious and rather painfully worthy. Nowhere near as radical as Miller would like to think. Like listening to Fanfare for the Common Man again and again and again (and I write as a Copland fan)

All My Sons – or was it A View From the Bridge? – was basically Denby’s quote made theatrical flesh. Businessman has two sons! (on reflection, it was definitely All My Sons) One loves him, one doesn’t! Dark secrets from his wartime profiteering days emerge! You cannot escape your past!

[ 15.02.2005, 00:02: Message edited by: Melmoth the Wonderer ]


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