Fun Stuff

Robertson Davies

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 05/28/2015 - 7:00pm
"A truly great book should be read in youth, again in maturity and once more in old age, as a fine building should be seen by morning light, at noon and by moonlight. "
Categories: Fun Stuff

Wernher von Braun

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 05/28/2015 - 7:00pm
"We can lick gravity, but sometimes the paperwork is overwhelming."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Samuel Johnson

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 05/28/2015 - 7:00pm
"A cucumber should be well-sliced, dressed with pepper and vinegar, and then thrown out."
Categories: Fun Stuff

fictioneer

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Thu, 05/28/2015 - 1:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for May 28, 2015 is:

fictioneer • \fik-shuh-NEER\  • noun
: someone who writes fiction especially in quantity and without high standards

Examples:
Dwight was a fictioneer who specialized in pulp novels, producing over 300 of them in his long career.

"Is it right for such irresponsible fictioneers to be playing around unconscionably with such tragic subject matter?" — Jeff Simon, Buffalo (New York) News, November 18, 2014

Did you know?
In Latin, the verb fingere means "to shape, fashion, or feign." Fictioneers surely do shape stories and feign the truth, so you could say that the noun fictioneer is etymologically true to its ancestor. The word fiction had been around for more than 500 years by the time fictioneer appeared in English in 1923, bearing a suffix that harks back to such words as engineer and pamphleteer. The word is used generally to refer to any writer of fiction but often specifically to one who writes with little concern for literary quality. Fictioneer and fiction aren't the only English feigners and shapers born of fingere. The words effigy, feign, and figment are among others that trace back to that Latin verb.

Categories: Fun Stuff

May 28, 1961: Appeal for Amnesty campaign launches

This Day in History - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1961, the British newspaper The London Observer publishes British lawyer Peter Benenson’s article “The Forgotten Prisoners” on its front page, launching the Appeal for Amnesty 1961–a campaign calling for the release of all people imprisoned in various parts of the world because of the peaceful expression of their beliefs.

Benenson was inspired to write the appeal after reading an article about two Portuguese students who were jailed after raising their glasses in a toast to freedom in a public restaurant. At the time, Portugal was a dictatorship ruled by Antonio de Oliveira Salazar. Outraged, Benenson penned the Observer article making the case for the students’ release and urging readers to write letters of protest to the Portuguese government. The article also drew attention to the variety of human rights violations taking place around the world, and coined the term “prisoners of conscience” to describe “any person who is physically restrained (by imprisonment or otherwise) from expressing…any opinion which he honestly holds and does not advocate or condone personal violence.”

“The Forgotten Prisoners” was soon reprinted in newspapers across the globe, and Berenson’s amnesty campaign received hundreds of offers of support. In July, delegates from Belgium, the United Kingdom, France, the United States, Germany, Ireland and Switzerland met to begin “a permanent international movement in defense of freedom of opinion and religion.” The following year, this movement would officially become the human rights organization Amnesty International.

Amnesty International took its mandate from the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which holds that all people have fundamental rights that transcend national, cultural, religious and ideological boundaries. By the 10th anniversary of the Appeal for Amnesty 1961, the organization it spawned numbered over 1,000 voluntary groups in 28 countries, with those figures rising steadily. In 1977, the organization received the Nobel Peace Prize.

Amnesty International owes much of its success in promoting human rights to its impartiality and its focus on individuals rather than political systems. Today, Amnesty International continues to work toward its goals of ensuring prompt and fair trials for all prisoners, ending torture and capital punishment and securing the release of “prisoners of conscience” around the globe.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - May 27

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:11pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

Gib is to llams as nepo is to desolc as pu is to ==?==

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - May 27 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:11pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - May 27

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:11pm
BrainBashers Daily Game

Dice Mogul
   Race around a circular board buying everything in sight, then building houses, hotels, or landmarks to get the most money.
[Played on the BrainBashers Games website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Anonymous

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:00pm
"Nobody knows the age of the human race, but everybody agrees that it is old enough to know better."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Blore's Razor

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:00pm
"Given a choice between two theories, take the one which is funnier."
Categories: Fun Stuff

James M. Barrie

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:00pm
"I know not, sir, whether Bacon wrote the works of Shakespeare, but if he did not it seems to me that he missed the opportunity of his life."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Sir Thomas Beecham

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 7:00pm
"A musicologist is a man who can read music but can't hear it."
Categories: Fun Stuff

riot act

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Wed, 05/27/2015 - 1:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for May 27, 2015 is:

riot act • \RYE-ut-AKT\  • noun
: a vigorous reprimand or warning — used in the phrase read the riot act

Examples:
Celia's parents read her the riot act after she stayed out for almost an hour past her curfew.

"[Angela Merkel] read Greece and other affected zone members the riot act: their borrowing and spending was out of control, and they'd have to rein it in, just as Germany had done." — Paul Hockenos, The Nation, March 12, 2015

Did you know?
Many people were displeased when George I became king of England in 1714, and his opponents were soon leading rebellions and protests against him. The British government, anxious to stop the protests, passed a law called the "Riot Act." It allowed public officials to break up gatherings of 12 or more people by reading aloud a proclamation, warning those who heard it that they must disperse within the hour or be guilty of a felony punishable by death. By 1819, riot act was also being used more generally for any stern warning or reprimand. Although the law long ago fell into disuse and was finally repealed in 1973, the term that it generated lives on today.

Categories: Fun Stuff

May 27, 1941: Bismarck sunk by Royal Navy

This Day in History - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 11:00pm

On May 27, 1941, the British navy sinks the German battleship Bismarck in the North Atlantic near France. The German death toll was more than 2,000.

On February 14, 1939, the 823-foot Bismarck was launched at Hamburg. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler hoped that the state-of-the-art battleship would herald the rebirth of the German surface battle fleet. However, after the outbreak of war, Britain closely guarded ocean routes from Germany to the Atlantic Ocean, and only U-boats moved freely through the war zone.

In May 1941, the order was given for the Bismarck to break out into the Atlantic. Once in the safety of the open ocean, the battleship would be almost impossible to track down, all the while wreaking havoc on Allied convoys to Britain. Learning of its movement, Britain sent almost the entire British Home Fleet in pursuit. On May 24, the British battle cruiser Hood and battleship Prince of Wales intercepted it near Iceland. In a ferocious battle, the Hood exploded and sank, and all but three of the 1,421 crewmen were killed. The Bismarck escaped, but because it was leaking fuel it fled for occupied France. On May 26, it was sighted and crippled by British aircraft, and on May 27 three British warships descended on the Bismarck and finished it off.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Eddie Izzard

Quotes of the Day - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 7:00pm
"If you're choking in a restaurant you can just say the magic words, 'Heimlich maneuver,' and all will be well. Trouble is, it's difficult to say 'Heimlich maneuver' when you're choking to death."
Categories: Fun Stuff

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Quotes of the Day - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 7:00pm
"In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o'clock in the morning, day after day."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Russell Baker

Quotes of the Day - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 7:00pm
"Usually, terrible things that are done with the excuse that progress requires them are not really progress at all, but just terrible things."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Tom Stoppard

Quotes of the Day - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 7:00pm
"If Beethoven had been killed in a plane crash at the age of 22, it would have changed the history of music... and of aviation."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - May 26

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 6:57pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

Below are ten words which have been split in half.

The first column has all of the starts and the second column has all of the ends.

Can you pair the letters and remake the ten words?

BO   AF
BR   RE
FO   NE
GO   AF
HO   KE
JO   EW
LE   IN
LO   AM
LO   ND
SO   PE

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - May 26 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 6:57pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff