Movies, music, romance

I once got a standing ovation playing a comb, seriously.

play combMDS of Pantheon Songs wonders:

What are some movies that are generally considered to be classics that you found to be just terrible/boring/ridiculous?

I fell asleep watching Citizen Kane on video; in general, I prefer seeing a film first on the big screen. But that lapse was probably because I was tired. The only film during which I ever fell asleep at a movie theater, excluding drive-in double features, was Empire of the Sun (1987), and again, maybe I was just fatigued.

I didn’t love either The Royal Tennenbaums or Lost in Translation, but this may be a function of seeing them after hearing too much hype. Or I was in a bad mood. Or tired.

Nothing, I guess, fits the bill.
Tom the Mayor asks:

Are you worried about Lydia when she gets to the age of Dating?

I was watching a performance of The Lion King that Lydia was in on March 2. There’s a scene where Nala, played by the pastors’ daughter, was being sized up by the evil king Scar. And the male pastor, who was fairly near me, got rather physically tense until Nala slapped Scar and got away.

So sure, I suppose it’s an issue. Don’t know what she’ll face, and kids seem to have more ways to be mean.

Also don’t know what dating will mean to a mixed-race kid these days, though you assume the world is better than this being a problem.
This must mean it’s New York Erratic time again:

What skill has gotten you the most girls? (Thinking clean, like music and singing and whatnot).

My guess is that I can be a very good listener. I was often friends with women I ended up going out with. Someone long ago told me that steering the conversation to be about the other person tends to make them feel good, and not just in romantic settings.

Though I know I did wow someone with my air guitar of Smoke On The Water.

What musical instruments do you play? Which do you wish you played?

I don’t play any instruments. That’s technically not true; I’ve played the comb. In public, including several times as part of the Green Family Singers. I once got a standing ovation playing the blues on a comb in Manlius, NY c 1970, seriously.

I wish I could play piano; I took a year of it when I was about 12, but I just didn’t have the chops. Or guitar; my father played and taught my sister Leslie in about a month, but I couldn’t get it.

What subject in school did you find the most difficult?

College freshman calculus. No idea what I was doing. And I did so well in high school math, with a 97 in algebra, 86 in geometry, and 98 in trigonometry; I would have done better in geometry, except memorizing proofs I thought was dumb.

First calc test I get a 73, the second 56, the third 37. I needed a passing grade on the final. I crammed for two days, sleeping maybe a total of four hours. Got a C on the final, a C in the course. Two weeks later, I looked at my textbook and did not understand a thing.

Which places on Earth you do NOT want to go to?

There are so many. Places that are too hot and sticky, and/or have too many insects; e.g. the Amazon. Places that are too cold, I mean below freezing even in summer; e.g., Antarctica. Places that are too remote because I like people; e.g., some cabin in the remote Rockies. Places that are too crowded because I don’t like people THAT much; e.g. Calcutta.

There is still time to Ask Roger Anything.

W is for When was the Earth born?

James Ussher “was a prolific scholar, who most famously published a chronology that purported to establish the time and date of the creation as the night preceding Sunday, 23 October 4004 BC

I had this rather awkward time recently. One of my nieces was over, and she and my daughter were reading a book about this young girl in England in the 19th century who had discovered some fossilized items. The book mentioned that the items were millions of years old. This didn’t make any sense to the niece, who believes the age of the earth can be measured in thousands of years.

There is a philosophy called Young Earth creationism, which is “the religious belief that the Universe, Earth, and all life on Earth were created by direct acts of the Abrahamic God during a relatively short period, sometime between 5,700 and 10,000 years ago.” The article notes that, as early as 160 A.D., this theory was established. The key basis of this theory is a literal interpretation of the Bible, and the dates therein.

What I find interesting is that while “support for a young Earth declined from the eighteenth century onwards with the development of the scientific revolution, and scientific paradigm shifts…the rise of fundamentalist Christianity at the start of the twentieth century saw a revival of interest in Young Earth creationism, as a part of the movement’s rejection of the explanation of evolution.” So the concept all but went away, then came back. I did not realize this philosophy had such deep roots.

Possibly the best known historical proponent of YEC was James Ussher (1581–1656), who was an Archbishop in Ireland for the last 30 years of his life. “He was a prolific scholar, who most famously published a chronology that purported to establish the time and date of the creation as the night preceding Sunday, 23 October 4004 BC, according to the proleptic Julian calendar.” Even I don’t agree with his results, I admire the hard work that had to have been necessary to compile it by hand.

I invite you, at your leisure, to read David E. Matson’s refutation of YEC in How Good Are Those Young-Earth Arguments? Plus this piece on the Big Bang Theory (no, not the comedy on CBS-TV). Generally, scientists believe the earth is about 4.5 billion years old, and the universe thrice that.

There is this struggle between biblical and scientific thought, something I just don’t understand. Any number of scientists feel that their study of the universe strengthens their belief in a Supreme Being, not diminishes it. While I believe in God, I don’t think it conflicts with a scientific explanation of Creation. Something along the lines of “God created the Big Bang.”

ABC Wednesday – Round 11

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