Lost Among Europeans

Musings - one of many

Whit Stillman, Forster and Merchant/Ivory, Radiohead, nerd neck, and some science.

Arts

A short article with Whit Stillman and Kate Beckinsale talking about The Last Days of Disco. I enjoy these types of informal chats where people tell you what was going on in their lives at the time they were making some well known project.

There’s this very interesting article on Merchant Ivory adaptations of Forster. I stumbled upon it after getting the urge to watch Howard’s End, and liking it so much that I bought the blu-ray of the recently restored version. The article discusses the humor in Forster, and there is a wonderful quote from Lionel Trilling, of which, here’s a sample:

Stendhal believed that gaiety was one of the marks of the healthy intelligence, and we are mistakenly sure that Stendhal was wrong.

The writer of the article suggests listening to Forster audio books, which I think I’m going to try.

And, a few things with Radiohead:

Science

Zombifying fungus have been found to be simbiotic with cicadas. This article brought to memory a video about the cordycepts fungus, which takes over ant colonies and other insects by turning them into zombies, growing on them and issuing spores. That this fungus is generating the nutrients required by cicadas to supplement their diet of sap, is some sort of poetry.

Here’s an interesting video on the rareness of blue colored animals.

There’s a whole genre of video channels with science-expert hosts behaving like quirky, fun, yet condescending guides. I wish they lost the act, but there’s plenty of interesting information to be learned from them.

There has been some alert about the large scale decimation of insects. Articles can be found in a number of outlets. The cause is not well known, but does not seem to be attributable to global warming, or at least not uniquely.

At the same time I read that article, there was a new moon phase that coincided with the Perseid meteor shower. I went out late at night to see it, but there was not much there, even in far-suburban sky. I started reading on light pollution. There is much concern about it, and even organizations.

There is also some research linking light pollution with insect decline. and, in Spanish press.

I would love to see light pollution reduced. I noted that where I live, the lights at night are much brighter than they need to be.

An article on Dark Matter, interesting mainly because it’s well written.

Nerd neck

In 2017 I was on physical therapy for a shoulder injury. My therapist commented that my neck stuck forward from my back, in a sort of tight angle. I started seeing things related to that. In a trip to Seattle, I noticed a gym called “Functional movements” or something similar, which promised to help you move well. I have always been clumsy, and this idea attracted me.

Some time later, I found the name for my neck-forwardness — of course, in America there’s a name for everything. It’s called upper crossed syndrome, also forward head posture, or nerd neck, which hit home.

I discovered that thanks to a youtube channel on exercising. But now that I know, I find mentions to nerd neck widely. Here in the Spanish press.

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