Wednesday, 30 September 2009
When hunting birds some people would beat about the bush to drive them out into the open. Other people would catch the birds. 'I won't beat about the bush' came to mean 'I will go straight to the point without any delay'.
A bakers dozen means thirteen. It is said to have come from the days when bakers were severely
A shrift was a confession made to a priest. Criminals were allowed to make a short shrift before they were executed. So if you gave somebody short shrift you gave them a few minutes to confess their sins before carry out the execution.
TAKE SOMEBODY UNDER YOUR WING
In Luke 12:34 Jesus laments that he wished to gather the people of Jerusalem as a hen gathers her chicks under new wings but Jerusalem was not willing.
Tuesday, 29 September 2009
While the Charleston as a dance probably came from the "star" or challenge dances that were all part of the dance called Juba, the particular sequence of steps which appeared in Runnin' Wild were probably newly devised for popular appeal. At first, the step started off with a simple twisting of the feet, to rhythm in a lazy sort of way. When the dance hit Harlem, a new version was added. It became a fast kicking step, kicking the feet, both forward and backward and later done with a tap. Further changes were undoubtedly made before the dance was put on stage. In the words of Harold Courlander, while the Charleston had some characteristics of traditional Negro dance, it "was a synthetic creation, a newly-devised conglomerate tailored for wide spread popular appeal. Although the step known as "Jay Bird", and other specific movement sequences like the snare stare are of Afro-American origin, no record of the Charleston being performed on the plantation has been discovered.
Although it achieved popularity when the song 'Charleston', sung by Elizabeth Welch, was added in the production Runnin' Wild, the dance itself was first introduced in Irving C Miller's Liza in the spring of 1923.
The characteristic Charleston beat, which Johnson said he first heard from Charleston dockworkers, incorporates the clave rhythm and was considered by composer and critic Gunther Schuller to be synonymous with the Habanera, and the Spanish Tinge.
Charleston was one of the dances from which Lindy Hop and Jazz Roots developed in the 1930s, though the breakaway is popularly considered an intermediary dance form. A slightly different form of Charleston became popular in the 1930s and 1940s, and is associated with Lindy Hop. In this later Charleston form, the hot jazz timing of the 1920s Charleston was adapted to suit the swing jazz music of the 1930s and 1940s. This style of Charleston has many common names, though the most common are Lindy Charleston, Savoy Charleston, 30s or 40s Charleston and Swing(ing) Charleston. In both 20s Charleston and Swinging Charleston the basic step takes 8 counts and was danced either alone or with a partner. Tap Charleston (1925 to 1926): Leonard Reed was said to have invented Tap Charleston after he learned tap in 1925. Tap Charleston was the Charleston with breaks into open position to do tap steps.
Honey is the only food that does not spoil. Honey found in tombs of Egyptian pharaohs has been tasted by archaeologists and found edible.
01 I was born on 16April 1889.
02 My place of birth was Walworth, London.
03 My parents were both music hall entertainers.
04 My maternal grandmother was half gypsy.
05 I was put in the workhouse at Lambeth when my mother was admitted to an Asylum.
06 I first toured America from 1910-1912 and shared a room in a boarding house with Arther Stanley Jefferson, who would later become known as Stan Laurel (Laurel and Hardy).
07 I started in films with the Keystone Film Company.
08 In the early days my principal character was 'The Tramp'.
09 I was a star of the silent screen.
10 One of my famous props was a cane.
Who do you think matches the clues given?
Monday, 28 September 2009
Based on estimates made by historians and charity organisations in the city at the time, between 250,000 and 300,000 people were killed, many of them women and children. The number of women raped was said by Westerners who were there to be 20,000 and there were widespread accounts of civilians being hacked to death.
Yet many Japanese officials and historians deny there was a massacre on such a scale. They admit that deaths and rapes did occur, but say they were on a much smaller scale than reported. And in case, they argue, these things happen in times of war.
(Pictured left: Japanese execution by sword.)
In 1931, Japan invaded Chinese Manchuria The following years saw Japan consolidate its hold, while China suffered civil war between communists and Kuomontang. The latter were led by General Chiang Kai-shek, whose capital was Nanjing. Despite a period of Chinese resistance the Japanese army eventually broke through at Shanghai and swiftly moved on to Nanjing.
Chiang Kai-shek's troops had already left the city and the Japanese army occupied it without difficulty.
At the time the Japanese army did not have a reputation for brutality. In the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5, the Japanese commanders had behaved with great courtesy towards their defeated opponents, but this was different. Japanese papers reported competitions among junior officers to kill the most Chinese.
Tim Durdin of the New York Times reported the early stages of the massacre before being forced to leave. He later wrote "I was 29 and it was my first big story for the New York Times. So I drove down to the waterfront in my car. And to get to the gate I had to climb over masses of bodies accumulated there. The car had to drive over these dead bodies and the scene on the waterfront, as I waited for the launch ... was of a group of smoking, chattering Japanese officers overseeing the massacring of a battalion of Chinese captured troops. They were marching about in groups of about 15, machine-gunning them"
As he departed he saw 200 men being executed in 10 minutes to the apparent enjoyment of Japanese military spectators.
He concluded that the rape of Nanjing was "one of the great atrocities of modern terms.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Sunday, 27 September 2009
When in doubt empty the magazine.
Do married people live longer than single ones or does it only seem longer?
Saturday, 26 September 2009
A is for arthritis;
B is for the bad back,
C is for the chest pains
D is for dental decay and decline.
E is for eyesight, can't read the top line!
F is for fissures and fluid retention.
H is high blood pressure - I'd rather it low;
I for incisions with scars you can show.
J is for joints, out of socket, won't mend,
K is for knees that crack when they bend.
L for libido, what happened to sex?
M is for memory, I forget what comes next.
N is neuralgia, in nerves way down low;
O is for osteo, bones that don't grow!
P for prescription, I have quite a few,
Just give me a pill and I'll be good as new.
Q is for queasy, is it fatal or flu?
R is for reflux, one meal turns to two.
S is for sleepless nights, counting my fears,
T is for Tinnitus; bells inmy ears!
U is for urinary, troubles with flow;
V for vetigo, that's 'dizzy' you know.
W for worry. Now what's going round?
X is for x-ray, and what might be found.
Y for another yaer, I'm left here behind,
Z is for zest I still have - in my mind.
I've survived all the symptoms, my body's deployed,
And I'm keeping twenty-six doctors fully employed.
HAVE A GREAT DAY!
"Rhythm" is the longest English word without a vowel.
Friday, 25 September 2009
He tells her, "That's 100 lbs of dynamite, Baby."
He takes off his pants and the blonde says,
"What massive calves you have!"
The body builder tells her, "That's 100 lbs of dynamite, Baby"
He then removes his underwear and the blonde goes running out
of the apartment screaming in fear'
The body builder puts his clothes back on and chases after her. He
catches up to her and asks why she ran out of the apartment
The blonde replies, "I was to be around all that dynamite after I
saw how short the fuse was!"