Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Who cares?

… American Humanist Association Board Statement Withdrawing Honor from Richard Dawkins - American Humanist Association. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

ADVOCATING PROGRESSIVE VALUES AND EQUALITY FOR HUMANISTS, ATHEISTS, AND FREETHINKERS. 

Well, that says it all, doesn’t it? Why don’t they try clear and correct thinking, rather than fashionable notions. I’d call them bird brains, but that would be an insult to birds. Pathetic. If I were Dawkins, I’d tell them to take their award and and shove it. Maybe it will dawn on him what  kind of intellectual lowlifes he’s been encouraging.

Anniversary …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Monkey business in France leads the way for others.

Sounds about right …

 College Student Aces Final By Just Answering 'Racism!' To Every Question | The Babylon Bee.

The Skidmore College English professor who delivered the passing grade explained her rationale. "Charlie's test answers weren't technically correct, but they spoke to a deeper truth: everything is racist. At Skidmore College, creating leftist radicals who can find racism everywhere and help us burn down Western Civilization is much more important than educating people. For that reason, we decided to give her a passing grade!"


Together at last …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Twain, Caesar, and Shakespeare in America.

That $40 a week Twain got was the equivalent in today’s money of $1,276.

Before the fall …

… Western Civilization's Growing Intellectual Dead Zones

Only after the rot becomes too evident to deny will there be widespread recognition of the problem. But by then it is usually too late. Perhaps the most puzzling aspect of collapsing civilizations is they rarely see the crash coming. Things keep “getting better” until the smash, which reveals itself briefly in what has been termed the “Ceauscescu moment”, the instant when artificial stupidity is replaced by blinding clarity.

Interesting choices …

… Largehearted Boy: Aaron Poochigian's Playlist for His Translation of "Aristophanes: Four Plays". (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Attending to now …

 First Known When Lost.

… I am not amused by what appears in the newspapers (or in their modern electronic successors).  Hence, I am content to leave news out of my life entirely.  "Where, to me, is the loss/Of the scenes they saw -- of the sounds they heard."  (Mary Coleridge, "No Newspapers.")  Of course, in this day and age snippets inevitably seep through -- insidious, noisome.  Our life is now akin to being forever stranded in an airport departure lounge, forced to listen to the ever-present cable news presenters dissembling from an unasked-for television screen hovering in the air somewhere above us.  Ah, welladay!

Something to think on …

Throughout history the world has been laid waste to ensure the triumph of conceptions that are now as dead as the men that died for them.
— Henry de Montherlant, born on this date in 1895

Compelling …

… Paul Davis On Crime: 'The Serpent': A Fascinating True Crime Series Now Streaming On Netflix.

Worth considering …

… Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes — That man is richest.

Word of the Day …

… Numismatic | Word Genius.

Monday, April 19, 2021

Mutual virtuosity …

… Poem of the week: To Vladimir Nabokov … by Anthony Burgess. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Blogging note …

 I have had things to deal with today, and I still do. A dear for whom have power of attorney has just been taken the hospital from the assisted living facility where he resides. I am awaiting word as to whether I should go to the hospital. Obviously, blogging just now takes a back seat.

Imagine that …

… Believe it or not — Iranian Radio reviews works by Twain.

Something to think on …

All that non-fiction can do is answer questions. It's fiction's business to ask them.
— Richard Hughes, born on this date in 1900

Q&A …

 Formal Poetry Is Not a Museum Piece: The Millions Interviews Aaron Poochigian - The Millions. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

… the experience of translating Bacchae, on commission, for the stage changed my whole approach to the translation of plays. Whereas readers of a text can stop to learn about arcane subjects in footnotes and endnotes, theatergoers cannot. In both the Bacchae translation and the Aristophanes translations I tried to gloss as much as I could, unobtrusively, in the text. Thus “Bromios,” a cult title of Dionysus, is translated as its meaning, “The Roarer” or “The Roaring God.” 

Worth considering …

… Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes — Love takes off the masks.

Sounds about right …

… Neil Ferguson and the Imperial College 'Modelers' are Incompetent Scientists and Shameful Liars - Cafe Hayek.

And much else …

 Samantha Bee Is Wrong about Comedy | National Review. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

… At the Babylon Bee, we make fun of the Left more than we make fun of the Right. I can understand Bee’s comments, along with the desire to poke fun at the opposition more than anyone or anything else. Yet at the same time, my favorite pieces to write are the ones that punch our audience square in the face, that call out the hypocrisy of the Right, that make fun of inconsistent living among Christians and our failure to live up to what we preach. I love satire that loves its target most of all.

Word of the Day …

… Gruntled | Word Genius.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Blogging note …

 I have had a long day. Much caring for others. Feeling very tired. Blogging will resume tomorrow.

A sound resolution …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Listen my children and you shall hear (all sorts of things).

Blogging note …

 I have to run some errands for my wife, so blogging won't resume later. (Life comes first.)

Report from the front …

… Racial Justice Riots: Calling Evil Good and Good Evil | The American Spectator | USA News and Politics. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

What would the prophet Isaiah say about the latest chaos around Minneapolis?

Ah, yes …

… Poet laureate Simon Armitage publishes elegy for Prince Philip | Poetry | The Guardian. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Something to think on …

These transnationalists have little need for national loyalty, view national boundaries as obstacles that thankfully are vanishing, and see national governments as residues from the past whose only useful function is to facilitate the elite's global operations
— Samuel P. Huntington, born on this date in 1927

Misery and romance …

… Monica Jones, Philip Larkin and Me by John Sutherland review – a poisonous love. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Enter, like a shining knight, John Sutherland, who was taught by Jones as an undergraduate, became a good friend and drinking partner, and rightly believes she has been hard done by. “In crucial ways Monica made me,” he says, and his book pays generous tribute to the woman who kick-started his prolific academic career. As the first scholar to see Jones’s letters to Larkin (all 54 boxes of them in the Bodleian Library), he has also learned things about her he didn’t know, some of them hard to take.

Word of the Day …

 Digerati | Word Genius.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Lovely …

In The Beauty Created By Others” by Adam Zagajewski. (Hat tip, Cynthia Haven.)

Odd couple …

 Beyond Eastrod (again): Unexpected friendship between two 19th century giants.

Art available online...

 ...This sort of initiative is wonderful: thousands of works now accessible from Amsterdam

Just so you know …

… Climate Attribution Studies Can’t Be Trusted — New Paper/ (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

“We simply have little or no idea what the climate would have been without human activity. Moreover, we can’t ever know what it was like.”

Adventures at the movies …

Sitting in the Dark with Strangers. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

These are not exactly reviews. They are – as any regular reader of Theodore Dalrymple would expect – brief but eloquent essays on just about any topic the film in question suggests. He touches on (among other things) how undramatic landscapes make for better paintings than mountain vistas, how medical mortality rates are affected by the Christmas holidays, how good fortune may test our character more than ill fortune, and how subjects apparently “irrelevant” to children’s lives may be the most important part of their education.

For the defense …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Sex, Nonsense, and Shakespeare.

Dangling …

 Zealotry of Guerin: Poetry and Fiction by Christopher Guerin: Painting the Eiffel Tower, 1924, Sonnet #559.

Something to think on …

I would distinguish between a visitor and a pilgrim: both will come to a place and go away again, but a visitor arrives, a pilgrim is restored. A visitor passes through a place; the place passes through the pilgrim.
—. Cynthia Ozick,  born on this date in 1928

Unimpressed …

What’s so disappointing (and indeed outright nasty) is the way that Bailey has traded in his compassion for casual misogyny and a complete lack of fairness in relation to Maggie Martinson. Much as it pains me to say, Bailey’s Roth assignment turns out to be his Faustian bargain. 

Worth considering …

… Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes — The most difficult thing.

Coining a phrase …

… The paired words “Cold War” get added to our lexicon.

Word of the Day …

… Hyaline | Word Genius.

Friday, April 16, 2021

Blogging note …

 I have persons to take care of today. Blogging will resume whenever?

Offbeat wisdom …

… The 40 Best Hunter S. Thompson Quotes | Libertas Bella.

“Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run, but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories can touch that sense of knowing that you were there and alive in that corner of time and the world. Whatever it meant.”

Hmm …

 Bruce Charlton's Notions: More on Christian Zen (and John Butler) - how it differs from what I want from life, and after-life. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

 This is something that must be read in full. But it may prove useful to read this as well: Shusaku Endo in conversation with William Johnston. I once interviewed William Johnston. He was one of two persons I have  encountered who gave me the impression of being genuinely good (the other was John Polkinghorne).

Thanks to Dave, here is my interview with Father Johnston.

Something to think on …

 Man is a rational animal. He can think up a reason for anything he wants to believe.

— Anatole France, born on this date in 1844

Word of the Day …

… Confrere | Word Genius.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Together at last …

… Paul Davis On Crime: Baseball, Boxing And Murder: My Philadelphia Weekly 'Crime Beat' Column On Allen Abel, Hughie McLoon And Prohibition Era Philadelphia.

The greatest generation …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): The best and brightest in the U.S. Navy during WW2.

Good …

… James O'Keefe to Sue Twitter Over Suspension Following CNN Sting Videos.

Together at last …

 Paul Davis On Crime: Baseball, Boxing And Murder: My Philadelphia Weekly 'Crime Beat' Column On Allen Abel, Hughie McLoon And Prohibition Era Philadelphia.

These days …

… Chad Prather: Texas Venue Wanted to Censor Comedian's Jokes - Hollywood in Toto.

“I would rather somebody come out and say exactly what they’re thinking, because then, if they’re being an a**hole or a s***head I can call ’em an a**hole or a s***head,” he said. “Their language is the only way I can get a reflection of what’s going on in their brain and their personality. I want a person to tell me the truth.”

Me, too. 

Indeed …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): There once was a poem called a limerick.

Learning and planning …

… Lessons from Flannery O’Connor.

Something to think on …

We prefer a meaningless collective guilt to a meaningful individual responsibility.
— Thomas Szasz, born on this date in 1920

The course of deeds …

… The Stones by Tomas Tranströmer | Poetry Foundation. (Hat tip, Rus Bowden.)

Tomas Tranströmer was born on this date in 1931.

Have a look …

… Photos Of The Week No. 14. (Hat tip, Rus Bowden.)

Hearkening …

… The Rainbird by Bliss Carman | Poetry Magazine. (Hat tip, Rus Bowden.)

Bliss Carman was born on this date in 1861.

Word of the Day …

… Taxonomy | Word Genius.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

I’m not so sure …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Beyond Eastrod (again) explained in plain English.

I cannot quite agree with Tim. I do not think that anything he has written about Flannery O’Connor’s writing has in any way diminished it. It has, on the contrary, provided an explanation of why it affects us as it does.

Reunited …

… Beyond Eastrod (again): Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice.

Something to think on …

Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder. 
— Arnold J. Toynbee, born on this date in 1889

 


It was bound to happen …

Politically Correct “Lord of the Flies. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

“Just because we’re stranded doesn’t give you the right to use non-inclusive language,” Jack said.

Character and writing …

 Style Reveals the Man by Joseph Epstein | Articles | First Things. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

From Aristotle through Horace, Tacitus, and Quintilian, on to Edgar Allan Poe, Walter Raleigh, and Arthur Quiller-Couch, up to Strunk and White’s Elements of Style in our own day, there has been no shortage of manuals on oratory and writing. The most useful, I have found, is F. L. Lucas’s Style, partly because it does not pretend to instruct, but in even greater part because of the wide-ranging literary intelligence of its author, whose own style, lucid, learned, authoritative, rarely fails to persuade. One has to admire the sangfroid of an author who, at the close of a splendid book on the subject of style, writes: “We may question, indeed, whether style has ever been much improved by books on style.”

Word of the Day …

… Volute | Word Genius.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Time for a chuckle …

 Paul Davis On Crime: A Little Humor: Why I Worked At The Philadelphia Quartermaster.

Another birthday …

… American literature’s most famous resident of Jackson MS.

A birthday and more …

 Beyond Eastrod (again): So be it when I shall grow old on the yellow brick road.

So there …

 … Experts Are Super Smart And 100% Reliable, Experts Confirm | The Babylon Bee.

Something to think on …

It is, I believe, the primary charm of poetry to give the lesson of mirage, that is, to show the fragile and vibrant movement of creation, in which the word is in a certain way human quintessence, prayer.
— J. M. G. Le Clézio, born on this date  in 1940

A little bit of science …

… Facemasks in the COVID-19 era: A health hypothesis. (Hata tip, Dave Lull.)

Conclusion

The existing scientific evidences challenge the safety and efficacy of wearing facemask as preventive intervention for COVID-19. The data suggest that both medical and non-medical facemasks are ineffective to block human-to-human transmission of viral and infectious disease such SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19, supporting against the usage of facemasks. Wearing facemasks has been demonstrated to have substantial adverse physiological and psychological effects. These include hypoxia, hypercapnia, shortness of breath, increased acidity and toxicity, activation of fear and stress response, rise in stress hormones, immunosuppression, fatigue, headaches, decline in cognitive performance, predisposition for viral and infectious illnesses, chronic stress, anxiety and depression. Long-term consequences of wearing facemask can cause health deterioration, developing and progression of chronic diseases and premature death. Governments, policy makers and health organizations should utilize prosper and scientific evidence-based approach with respect to wearing facemasks, when the latter is considered as preventive intervention for public health.

Source of inspiration …

… The Haunted Imagination of Alfred Hitchcock | The New Republic. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

There was Alfred Hitchcock the lower–middle-class lad from the East End of London who from earliest days was obsessed by the shadow play of three-dimensional images on a two-dimensional screen, and then there was “Alfred Hitchcock,” a balding fat man in a double-breasted suit with a protruding lower lip and an instantly recognizable profile, who made a fortune in Hollywood by playing to, and playing upon, our deepest fears and phobias. Which was the real man, if there was one?

John Banvillle says in this piece that “It’s unlikely that he held on to his faith.” But a Jesuit priest, Mark Henninger, who got to know Hitchcock when the director was an old man recounted in a Wall Street Journal article some years ago that  “Hitchcock had been away from the church for some time, and he answered the responses in Latin the old way. But the most remarkable sight was that after receiving communion, he silently cried, tears rolling down his huge cheeks.” He certainly had a Catholic funeral.

In case you wondered …

 Did Shakespeare Base His Masterpieces on Works by an Obscure Elizabethan Playwright? | Arts & Culture | Smithsonian Magazine. (Hat tip, Rus Bowden.)

New research suggests that a long-forgotten playwright might be the source of some of Shakespeare’s most memorable works. As journalist Michael Blandingargues in North by Shakespeare: A Rogue Scholar’s Quest for the Truth Behind the Bard’s WorkSir Thomas North, who was born nearly 30 years before the Bard, may have penned early versions of All’s Well That Ends WellOthelloRichard IIA Winter’s TaleHenry VIII and several other plays later adapted by the better-known dramatist.

Belonging …

… The Ragged and the Beautiful. (Hat tip, Rus Bowden.)

Word of the Day …

… Esculent | Word Genius.

Monday, April 12, 2021

April Poetry at North of Oxford …

 … Three Poems by Eric Fisher Stone.

… Two Poems by Lillo Way.

 Beauty Rises From Flame by Mark J. Mitchell.

… Electrocuted by Alexander P. Garza.

… Two Poems by Lee Landeau.

… Wild by Paul Ilechko.

Sad …

 The tragic tale of Monica Jones, Philip Larkin's girlfriend - The Oldie. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Above all, she hated herself, and however much gin she swallowed, she could not die. In the lonely fifteen years which followed her lover’s death, she lasted and lasted.


And another …

 … Madame Bovary’s sensational trial and style.

Anniversary …

 Flannery O’Connor’s baptism and “The River”.

Master at work …

 Collapsing Time: On John Fuller’s “Asleep and Awake”. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)
Ultimately, for all his shrewd constructions, his enviable ear, it’s the quality of Fuller’s description that most recommends him. The book glitters with memorable phrase-making and seemingly effortless coinages, images at once surprising and inevitable, casting their light back and forth within the atmosphere of frail mortality and ebullient living: a grandfather clock is a “coffin for time,” parents in rain ponchos are “[u]pright as bears in holiday attire,” remembered fathers are “spruce acrobats” or “tender-hearted dandies.”

Something to think on …

My favorite books are a constantly changing list, but one favorite has remained constant: the dictionary. Is the word I want to use spelled practice or practise? The dictionary knows. The dictionary also slows down my writing because it is such interesting reading that I am distracted.
— Beverly Cleary, born on this date in 1916

No Mr. Niceguy …

Novelist James Jones Showed Grace in the Face of Hemingway’s Cruelty. (Hat tip, Jon Caroulis.)

… In 1950, the publisher Charles Scribner sent galleys of my father’s first novel, From Here to Eternity, to Hemingway, hoping for an endorsement. What Scribner got back was a letter so vile, so cruel, so ugly, it is still hard for me to believe Hemingway wrote it. He compares my father’s writing to snot, he calls him a phony and a coward (a wounded combat veteran of Guadalcanal!), and Hemingway ends by saying he hopes my father kills himself.

Worth considering …

… Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes — A true friend.

Hmm …

 21 must-read books that defined the 20th century | Kobo Blog. (Hat tip, Jon Caroulis.)

Word of the Day …

… Winkle | Word Genius.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

What an ass …

… David Hogg quits progressive pillow company, Twitter reactions - TheBlaze.

Do us all a favor, kid: Go the hell away.

Sad anniversary …

… Beyond 15135: President dies of massive cerebral hemorrhage.

Author's secrets …

 … Barbara Pym’s secret sexual awakening.

… The Adventures of Miss Barbara Pym by Paula Byrne – the ‘modern Jane Austen’?


(Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

I hope they win …

… Team Of Lawyers Suing WHO And Related Orgs. For Misleading World About COVID - The Lid.

Begging to differ …

 PEVEAR AND VOLOKHONSKY ARE INDEED OVERRATED: MY TWO ROUBLES. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

P&V seem to pride themselves on sticking close to the original. But the reason so many celebrated translators do not do so as diligently as they do is that languages differ in what means they use to convey concepts. This language conveys something with an adjective while that language needs a phrase for it. This language conveys something with a quiet resonance from a word while that language nails that something with an explicit suffix. This language expresses something which, rendered in that other language, sounds hopelessly affected or insincere and you have to work around it.

Hmm …

… Two extravagant exceptions among Mark Twain’s novels.

Word of the Day …

 Sockdolager | Word Genius.

Something to think on …

Money can't buy happiness, but neither can poverty.
— Leo Rosten, born on this date in 1908

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Ah, yes …

Our Flexible, Malleable Media.

While Trump was in office, it was all “kids in cages!” all the damn time. Now the kids in cages are back, but since it’s Biden, it’s not a bad thing anymore. In fact, it doesn’t seem to be a thing at all. Even Democrat politicians are publicly stating how bad and crowded things are, especially at the Donna facility in Texas. But Jen Psaki will have to “circle back” to that topic. Ted Cruz went down to see for himself (he is one of two senators from Texas, this is one of his areas of responsibility) and the Biden administration, excuse me, the Biden-HARRIS administration, sent some PR chick down to stand in front of Cruz’s phone as he was videoing the kids in cages. She tried to make it all his fault by repeating the intended-to-be-guilt-inducing mantra of “this isn’t a zoo, sir. Please have respect for the people.” All the while standing in front of literal cages with people laid out under space blankets looking like so many giant baked potatoes. Yep, lots of respect for their humanity there!

Worth considering …

 Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes — Never too old.

A strumming author …

… Beyond 15135: The story of Mark Twain and a Martin acoustic guitar.

And some more …

 

 Apr 8, 2021

COVID-19: Are Vaccines Amazing? Then Why the Hesitancy?

 Dear Frank​:

 With all adults soon to be eligible to get a “free vaccine,” and large efficient distribution centers in many areas, what are you waiting for?

 “Amazing” is the word that Dr. Monica Gandhi used in her 13-minute presentation on COVID-19 vaccines. Dr. Gandhi is a professor of medicine at the University of California at San Francisco and director of the UCSF Center for AIDS Research.

 COVID rates and deaths are decreasing—good news. Is it because of the warp-speed vaccine rollout? More than 168 million doses have been given in the U.S., and 18 percent of Americans are considered ”fully vaccinated” as of Apr 7.

 There are several potential reasons for falling rates of a respiratory disease: (1) springtime warmer temperatures and more sunlight; (2) Farr’s Law (epidemics rise and fall in roughly a bell-shaped curve); (3) herd immunity (a sufficient number of immune persons in the population likely to be exposed); (4) adoption of early effective treatment (mostly outside the U.S. and Western Europe).

 The shape of the curves of COVID-19 deaths in Israel (55% vaccinated) and South Africa (0.3% vaccinated) is roughly the same, as the first graphic shows).

 “Shocking” is the word others use for what they consider a mass experiment on the whole world without adequate consent, which would include the fact that long-term health consequences cannot yet be known.

 There is a spike in the number of post-vaccination deaths reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) as the graphic and chart show. Since 2011, 2,749 deaths associated with ALL vaccines have been reported, and nearly 64% of them have occurred soon after a COVID-19 jab. The CDC, however, does not find a causal relationship. People die or have strokes every day.

 The AstraZeneca vaccine has been paused, restarted, and then restricted to younger populations because of a rare type of clotting problem. The UK’s Yellow Card system shows that this problem has been associated far more frequently with the AstraZeneca vaccine than with the Pfizer product. All the COVID-19 vaccines are associated with reports of pulmonary emboli, brain bleeds, strokes, low platelets, other blood disorders, and many other adverse effects.

 NONE of these are listed on the “Fact Sheets” distributed at the time of vaccination.

 All these effects can occur with the COVID illness, so the argument is that the disease is worse than the vaccine. Therefore, people should protect themselves, and also altruistically protect others. Vaccines are supposed to do that, and Dr. Gandhi says that these do. The CDC, however, does not make this claim, stating that: “We’re still learning how vaccines will affect the spread of COVID-19.”

 There are many unknowns. But in making their decisions, people might consider that deaths from COVID are declining, and reports of deaths after vaccination are increasing. One particularly interesting experience is deaths in Irish nursing homes before, during, and after the vaccination campaign (see graphic below).

 

  

Jane M. Orient, M.D.

Executive Director, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons


Some facts …

 Apr 7, 2021

COVID-19: Is Your Mask Safe?

 Dear Frank​:

 Do you know what your mask is made of?

 Your mask will keep you from inhaling at least some infected droplets that are too large to get through the gaps, but at the price of inhaling whatever tiny particles are coming from the mask itself.

 Some worry that mask components may be the new asbestos, inhaled all day long from a source right in front of your nose.

 Health Canada has issued a warning about blue and gray disposable face masks, which contain an asbestos-like substance associated with “early pulmonary toxicity.” The SNN200642 masks, which are made in China and sold and distributed by a Quebec-based company called Métallifer, had been part of Canada’s public school reopening plan.

 The masks contain microscopic graphene particles. Graphene is a strong, very thin material. Some daycare educators had expressed concerns when children complained that they felt they were swallowing cat hair.

 A similar disposable mask, known as MC9501, was likewise recalled throughout Canada after 31.1 million had been distributed by government.

 Nearly all face masks increase the daily intake of microplastic fibers. Scientists first discovered microplastics in the lung tissue of some patients who died of lung cancer in the 1990s. Plastic degrades slowly, so once in the lungs it tends to stay there and build up. Some studies have found that the immune system can attack these foreign objects, causing prolonged inflammation that can lead to diseases such as cancer. Reused masks produced more loosened fibers.

 The nonwoven material in disposable surgical masks is melt-blown polypropylene plastic, which the masks can be shown to shed when examined under a microscope. Virus adhering to these microparticles can survive for days. The symptoms a surgeon experienced after wearing one such mask for four hours were like those he had had when working with fiberglass.

 Some masks contain fiberglass. One anesthesiologist said she can feel the fiberglass in the disposables and now only wears flimsy nylon masks.

 The mask that your child may be forced to wear likely does not meet National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) safety standards. What might it be doing to his little lungs?

 

 For more information on masks, see https://aapsonline.org/mask-facts/.

Jane M. Orient, M.D.

Executive Director, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

The miracle of reading

… Zealotry of Guerin: Poetry and Fiction by Christopher Guerin: The Bookworm (Georg Schafer), Sonnet #558.

A genuine outsider …

… This Rare Spirit: A Life of Charlotte Mew by Julia Copus - review by Joanna Kavenna. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

She disliked literary parties, rebuffed influential people, including Ottoline Morrell, and had ‘an abhorrence of self-promotion’. She lived in Gordon Square without ever knowing her close neighbour Virginia Woolf or other members of the Bloomsbury Group.

The virtues of reading …

… The Literature of Wisdom and Enjoyment | The Russell Kirk Center. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

… Prior organizes her book based on twelve essential virtues, calling to mind a sort of literature-based Nichomachean Ethics. It is this organizational structure that sets her book above standard literary criticism. Prior has paired polemics and narrative to both instruct and persuade. In each chapter, she uses a work of narrative fiction to extol and analyze the nature of each virtue, resulting in a work both entertaining and edifying.

You can read much of what Prior has to say about Cormac McCarthy’s The Road here (which Dave also sent along). As my review of  The Road indicates, I do not share her view.

Something to think on …

Rules and models destroy genius and art.
— William Hazlitt, born on this date in 1778