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The Elks: Edifice Rex … (reissue of a reminiscence when the blog was more a place of easy-going writing and topics)

elks 3

Originally published Oct 11, 2009.

I was thinking as I am doing the series on the Houses of Williamstown, about other small towns and the outsize edifices of grandeur built to exude permanence, status, and a desire to go inside.

Of course, this is easy for me, I live in a small town.

And the answer is: The Elks! Small town belonging, particularly important when Sunday Blue laws made a private club the only place you could get a drink; before the lotteries when ditto for gambling; and in small towns, the only place the male burghers could go a couple of times a year for a ‘smoker’ with a stripper.

Membership soared until the seventies, when booze was suddenly available at Safeway, the states were sponsoring gambling instead of censoring it, and nudity was available everywhere including topless shoe-shine parlors.

And so we have on Main Streets across the Heartland, temples and lodges that parallel the houses on campi. Many, as you drive past, seem to be ‘for sale’ or have been converted into other uses.

Membership in Fraternal Orders named for animals or the job skills of construction are dwindling and their remaining members approaching their dotage.

Has small town America lost a way of life as well as Williams? And if so, does any one care except for aged Past Exalted Rulers?

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November 11th, 2010

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Jasper Johns
1955
Oil on canvas
MOMA

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Ephblog Shortcut Keys

For posters too busy to write out responses to some of the more annoying rhetorical techniques commonly employed on this blog, I present these handy shortcut keys.  Updated with several additions since a prior version of this post …

  • The instant classic, iterating to agreement.
  • Two options for the frequently-needed beating a dead horse.
  • The strawman, and his cousin, the red herring.
  • To keep David in check, this is handy when Ephblog threatens to transform into KaneBlog, and this, for when it devolves into a Page Six-style gossip rag.
  • Of course, we need a troll icon.
  • Another Ephblog favorite: moving the goalposts.
  • When we need to rant at another poster, who better than Pacino [warning: NSFW].
  • Uncomfortable learning, courtesy of Dick Swart.
  • The false dilemma.
  • David found this one: appropriate when someone gets out of line and needs to be bounced.
  • For responding to comments so incredibly dumb that a substantive rejoinder is pointless.
  • When we want to thank someone for pointing out the obvious.
  • The only acceptable response to excessive self-pity … unless Steve Buscemi happens to be in the room, as his version is way better.
  • For those with an obsessive need to correct false claims.
  • To register displeasure at impenetrable writing.
  • For response to commentators with a well-established, reflexive, irrational animus, consider the source.
  • And finally, reserved for those special moments when we just can’t take it anymore, I present this classic.
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Barefoot on Spring Street …

Thank goodness for the UK Protected Buildings. Otherwise a part of all EphBlog readers past might have just walked away.

The Abbey Road Studios, currently owned by EMI, were rumoured to be up for sale to pay down the company’s debt. But Here Comes the Sun! They are now listed as Class II Protected.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/8531054.stm

Sun Studios in Memphis is already on the National Historic Register. Love me Tender!
http://tps.cr.nps.gov/nhl/detail.cfm?ResourceId=-1610892873&ResourceType=Building

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EphBlog learns from the Olympics …

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and I think the app is free …


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In praise of Stetson …

Just a few thoughts after seeing the wonderful photo in the post below.

NB Please insert the word ‘head’ after ‘bang your …’

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Ephblog Shortcut Keys

For posters too busy to write out responses to some of the more annoying rhetorical techniques commonly employed on this blog, I present these handy shortcut keys.

  • The instant classic, iterating to agreement
  • Two options for the frequently-needed beating a dead horse
  • The strawman, and his cousin, the red herring
  • To keep David in check, this is handy when Ephblog threatens to transform into KaneBlog, and this, for when it devolves into a Page Six-style gossip rag
  • Of course, we need a troll icon
  • Another Ephblog favorite: moving the goalposts
  • When we need to rant at another poster, who better than Pacino [warning: NSFW]
  • Uncomfortable learning (although I bet Swart could do better …)
  • The false dilemma
  • David found this one: appropriate when someone gets out of line and needs to be bounced
  • For responding to comments so incredibly dumb that a substantive rejoinder is pointless. 
  • And finally, reserved for those special moments when we just can’t take it anymore, I present this classic
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And to think they did it without the Kane Plan: The Group finds roomies …

Strolling along … Read more

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A twittering Phil writes …

If I see my shadow, it’s another six weeks of debate on Health Care. If I don’t, Coakley makes it in MA and I get a single borrow in Morgan!

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The Rooming Act of 1880: Tempers Flare …


… as President Chadbourne, at Morgan Hall, pleads for patience with the new ‘no-more-than-three-a-bed’ rule enacted prior to room selection for the new semester. Notice the Williamstown police standing by to aid in restoring order.

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While you were debating Mr Moore, I moved my money to tuna futures ……

Some derivatives are bundling seaweed and wasabi. Beware of ginger going junk. Or is that Chinese?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8440758.stm

A winking fortune cookie to the wise is as good as a nod to a blind bat.

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” … that stole …”

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An Open Letter to Swart …


(Rechtal begins)
Swart,

I should have known that things couldn’t be going as smoothly as they were.

You did not, thankfully, bring along that pair of patchwork Bermudas that would have upset any legal deliberations. And you did see to it that no drinks topped with very small umbrellas came my way. Both of these caveats, of course, among my instructions to you.

And you did not fall asleep during the rather tedious testimony on the authenticity of the perforations used in the legal stamps in question. You were even successful in holding the exhibit of the paper used in the documents with other papers of the period without a noticeable tremor, which given the quantity of your luncheon libations, was remarkable.

In short, we won the day for family, if not for island architecture.

It was in the evening that the short sharp shock arrived.

I had not noticed at first that you brought with you your collection of vintage Hawaiian shirts until the second evening when you were a vision in eucalyptus leaves. It also dawned on me that while no miniature bumbershoots were coming to me, your own end of the mess was turning into a remarkable collection of paper paraphernalia in a rainbow of colours.

“Fine”, I thought, “it will keep you occupied”. How wrong I was. Little did I suspect that in the alcoholic haze of your version of reality you were somewhere with Maggio and Robert E Lee Prewitt preparing to ask Ernest Borgnine “If its’ fighin’ you want, Fatso …”. The first time this happened Fatso Judson was the maitre ‘d. The next few occasions involved a Matson executive, a Japanese tourist who, fortunately, had seen the movie, a surfer who had spent the day at Jaws but who was not familiar with the movie and thought you were in a remake of “Point Break”, and the wife of a distant cousin, who in fairness to you, did bear a remarkable resemblance to Margaret Dumont.

Happily, your supply of shirts was exhausted midway through the second week. I was exhausted somewhat closer to the mid point of the first week.

However, you are now safely returned and will I hope stay away from the products of sugar cane which have not boded well since the days of the Triangle Trade.

Rechtal Turgidley Jr
Quark Island, Maine

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“One more turn, then on to The Record …

1 more turn ..
there are only two things more pleasurable: nail-pulling, water-boarding, and Professor Moore. Three things, three things more pleasurable …”

(See below. No one expects …)

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It’ll be tough with smashing pumpkins …

smashing pumpins
all over the blog, to get ready for Thanksgiving. Don’t you just hate it when Halloween lingers?

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Ronald MacDonald : Pledgemaster …

ron pledge copy

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Re-brand the Williams Club …

REBRAND WMS CLUB

It worked for Abercrombie and Fitch!

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Williamstown PD say “Balloon Cow” not a hoax…

BALLOON HOAX

Town police are convinced that a group of seniors, disappointed by a recent Friday event, are sincere in their report. The seniors have supplied a photograph of the accidental inclusion of the college mascot in a weather balloon launch as a preparation for ‘Mountain Day’. “These quiet kids wouldn’t just make something like this up” said a spokesperson for the PD.

College officials are conducting an investigation of an unnamed DJ reportedly seen around the Physics Department at the time of the incident and alleged to be wearing earplugs and a decibel gauge as a disguise.

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The View from Bentonville …

walmart

Full disclosure: I was a member of the Hood River OR “NO BIG BOX” committee which prevented WallyWorld from opening a superstore.

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Extortion attempt revealed …

blackmail
I have a story for you. We all do bad things and I am no exception. For years I have been using pixels for prurient purposes. It is part of the power that comes with the presidency of EphBlog. I meant no harm to my family or to my beloved and faithful mac PowerPC G4.

This morning I received a letter with proof of my pixel abuse. I won’t reveal the identity of the blackmailer except to tell you the demand was for a lifetime pass to Lords. Now that is a sticky wicket!

I have reported this extortion attempt to David who assures me that the proper steps will be taken. I am sorry to have betrayed the trust of EphBlog readers and I am embarrassed for myself, and I know the pixels involved are particularly embarrassed!

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Falk: The discussion continues …

Falk escher small

Relativity MC Escher 1953

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Fit for a King … but did you know …

Re: http://www.ephblog.com/2009/09/25/cant-miss-event-of-the-fall-fit-for-a-king/hotdog stack

Many know the story of the Haystack Monument but only really old guys know the story of the Hotdog Monument;.

In October of 1806, after spending an afternoon speculating on hogbelly futures, four students – Swift, Hormel, Armour, and Nathan, were caught in one of those infamous Williamstown autumn thunderstorms. To avoid being drenched through, they took refuge under a near-by hotdog stack. At that time in American history, the hotdog was known only in very small parts of our new country, and for the most part was used as fodder for goats or as a powerful emitic,

But when the four young men emerged to a now-sunlit day, the American Board of Hotdog Missions had been formed. Soon, the hotdog had reached preeminance.!n fact in just a short time, it had gone “from a hotdog to a national institution”, and soon after, -”an International institution”!

Thus the story of the growth of American enterprise began when four earnest young Williams students escaped a rain storm. This shows the importance of being earnest. And the hymn they wrote the very next day still rings true today.

Pickle in the middle and the mustard on top,
just the way you like ‘em, and they’re always hot!

You can look it up!

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Inflatables: The rejected covers …

INFLATE RJECTS

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First Murdoch, now Kane! Holy Cow …

Kane Murdoch

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