Weekend 423.0 (Architecture is frozen music)

(1) Another quote from Ware: Conversations: “There’s a quote from Goethe that ‘architecture is frozen music,’ and I think it actually applies to comics more than anything because you’re taking images, making them still. They don’t actually come alive until you read them though; it’s sort of like reading sheet music in a way.”

(2) Semyon Bychkov talks about Strauss’s Eine Alpensinfonie (YouTube)

Weekend 422.0

Three quotes from Ware: Conversations

“More than anything I was just trying to get a real sense of what it felt like to be alive, and there’s a lot of those moments in life. I didn’t want to ignore them. I wanted to try to put them on the page, to try to get a real sense of time passing.”

“You don’t read a book trying to get emotion out of the font that it’s printed in. You read it for the story. You read for what happens in your mind, and to me comics are some sort of magic language that happens before your eyes.”

“I guess I’ve used birds in some stories as a way of linking together narrative passages that happened in different time periods, maybe to kind of create a hint of causation between two different times.”

Chris Ware on cartooning and memories (YouTube)

Weekend 421.0

“User anonymity and free speech would become things of the past. The moment IOI took it over, the OASIS would cease to be the open-source virtual utopia I’d grown up in. It would become a corporate run dystopia, an overpriced theme park for wealthy elitists.” – Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

(1) The Long Way Round: The Plane that Accidentally Circumnavigated the World (Medium)

“The British, Ford mused as they waited in the drawing room of the commander’s residence, seem to do everything politely. They probably even apologised during invasions. Maybe that was how they’d got away with doing so many of them.”

(2) The Vehicle of the Future Has Two Wheels, Handlebars, and Is a Bike (Wired)

Weekend 420.0

(1) True ‘Smart Cities’ should invest in libraries (CityMetric)

Weekend 419.0

Flowers in TwickenhamA couple of quotes from The Power of Silence: Against The Dictatorship of Noise by Robert Cardinal Sarah with Nicolas Diat…

“In this inspired place, the long tradition of the eremitic Orders, the tragedies of history, and the beauty of creation cross paths.”

“Carthusian spirituality was born of the encounter of a soul and a place, from the coincidence between a desire for a quiet life in God and a landscape, Cartusie solitudinem, as the ancient documents describe it, the isolation and wild beauty of which attracts souls to even greater solitude, far from the ‘fugitive shadows of the world’, allowing men to pass ‘from the storm of this world to the tranquil, sure repose of the port.'”

Weekend 418.0

(1) Why New York City Stopped Building Subways (CityLab)

(2) Navigationally challenged?

Weekend 417.0

“A thousand skeptic hands won’t keep us from the things we plan. Unless we’re clinging to the things we prize.”

(1) Arcade fame turns to infamy as Billy Mitchell’s record-setting Donkey Kong score is invalidated

“Regardless of who falls, the community will no doubt continue to thrive; the passion for these old games is undying and, as new generations have shown, is not limited to an aging cohort of Gen-Xers striving to extend a bygone era of glory (though admittedly they are a big part of it).”

(2) Defending John Hughes from Molly Ringwald’s Woke Attack

Weekend 416.0

Added two designer/artists/illustrators to the ‘Ink & Paint’ roll call:

(1) Rick Guidice – He was featured in Art of Atari by Tim Lapetino. His work for NASA could have been used in Spaceship Earth and/or Horizons.

See also Robert McCall and Herbert Ryman.

(2) Ryo Takemasa – Japanese illustrator featured in My Modern Met.

Weekend 415.1

“Because he grew up in a railroad town, Disney loved trains; his love for locomotives was so great, he had a 1/8th scale railroad built in the backyard of his home in Holmby Hills, California, in the late 1940s.” – A Historical Tour of Walt Disney World by Andrew Kiste

>> Watch (Vimeo)

Weekend 415.0

“As Rembrandt’s own life moves toward the shadows of old age, as his success wanes, and the exterior splendor of his life diminishes, he comes more in touch with the immense beauty of the interior life. There he discovers the light that comes from an inner fire that never dies: the fire of love. His art no longer tries to ‘grasp, conquer, and regulate the visible,’ but to ‘transform the visible in the fire of love that comes from the unique heart of the artist.'” – Henri J.M. Nouwen, The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming

Weekend 414.0 (…that’s how our minds, create creations…)

Quotes from The Thinking Fan’s Guide To Walt Disney World: EPCOT by Aaron Wallace. This is a well-written/researched book from a writer very passionate about EPCOT. It’s also creatively formatted with supplemental content suggestions (Disney and non-Disney) at the end of each chapter. I was simultaneously listening to Epcot Center on Spotify by TXCREW while reading.

“Epcot sometimes struggles to remember its past. But finding Future World is an adventure fans will always be ready for.”

“Like so many modern youth, rather than soak in their surroundings, Spaceship Earth’s guests are asked to play the equivalent of a free gaming app on a glorified iPad…the attraction’s new finale feels small and even selfish…that might be in keeping with the self-important sentiment of the Twitter generation, but Spaceship Earth used to be about challenging us to become more than we are…maybe a screen filled with vapid, diversionary entertainment in an isolating sea of blackness is a symbolic, even purposeful statement about where we’re headed next.”

“A theme park without a theme is just a carnival, and carnivals don’t earn tribute sites, fan forums, guidebooks, tour guides, conventions, memorabilia, or anniversary celebrations. They are fun but also common, and they rarely inspire.”

“Its inaugural class, the entrants of 1982 through 1995, can recall a place that made the future seem so darn epic, and the whole world so vibrant, eclectic, and connected, we just had to be a part of it…there are hundreds of thousands of 30-to-40-year-olds who recall their childhood visits as vividly as a close encounter.”

“Lean into the ’80s. The 1980s are to Epcot what the 1950s are to Disneyland. The decade will always be part of the park. We just happen to live in a time when the world is celebrating that particular era, so seize the moment. Find ways to echo your origins in contemporary aesthetics and new ideas for tomorrow, vowing never to stay inside the box.”

WATCH / READ THIS – Trying to lean into the ’80s? Find a copy of Insanely Great: The Life and Times of Macintosh, the Computer That Changed Everything by Steven Levy. It’s like a companion guide to Spaceship Earth. It may not resolve the ‘Battle of the Steves” but Aldus Manutius could appear in Spaceship Earth: Act II.

Where does that “One Little Spark” come from? Walt actually provides some insight in “Where Do the Stories Come From” (1956). It’s included on Your Host Walt Disney: TV Memories (1956-1965) which is part of the Walt Disney Treasures (DVD). I’m a little impartial to model railroading as a source of inspiration, and home movies from; Ward Kimball, Ollie Johnston, and Walt Disney featured on the DVD are absolutely amazing.

The Scan is from Designing Disney’s Theme Parks: The Architecture of Reassurance.

Weekend 413.0

Boom, boom, boom“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” – George Orwell

(1) The Reckoning of the FBI Has Begun

(2) The Real Collusion Story (National Review)

(3) Documents suggest possible coordination between CIA, FBI, Obama WH and Dem officials early in Trump-Russia probe: investigators (Fox News)

(4) Orwell On Trial: Was George Orwell an informer? The London intelligentsia is reeling from disclosures that the author of 1984 and Animal Farm gave a list of Communist sympathizers to a shadowy branch of the British government in 1949. (Vanity Fair)

(5) A quote from Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination by Neal Gabler:

“Walt’s belief that the SCG was Communist-inspired was undoubtedly sincere. It also may not have been entirely wrong. Arthur Babbitt certainly wasn’t a Communist, nor were any of the other animators, but Dave Hilberman, the assistant who had begun organizing the studio, had by his own admission been a member of the Communist Party and had even traveled to Russia when he was a young man. Moreover, an FBI report called William Pomerance, soon to be the union’s business manager, ‘one of the leading Communists in the movie industry’ and claimed that at least since July 1941, a month after the strike began, the union had followed the Communist Party line. Citing an internal source close to the labor situation, the report concluded that the Disney strike proved ‘conclusively’ that the SCG was Communist-dominated and said that the Communists ‘threw the entire strength of the Communist machine in Hollywood’ into the dispute.”

The still is from Our Friend the Atom.

Weekend 412.0

Quiet weekend. I took a look at my list of personal goals for 2018 (hastily drafted during my holiday sabbatical) and was frightened by the lack of progress.

(1) Route Plan Roll / London Cycle Map

(2) Japanese Illustrator Creates Beautiful Handbook of the Birds You’ll Find in Tokyo (My Modern Met)

Weekend 411.0

(1) Museum piece: a show at the Cooper Hewitt explores design and technology (Wallpaper*)

(2) Caricature: Or, Guston’s Graphic Novel by Chris Ware (The New York Review of Books)

Weekend 410.1 (AOE 3 / 2V3 / Yucatan War)

AOE 3This was an all out European showdown in the Americas on a map called Yucatan. The sovereign(s) involved were the British, Dutch, French, Spanish, and Portuguese. The British (red) were partnered with the Dutch (purple) while the French (yellow), Spanish (blue), and Portuguese (green) were allied. I’m going to organize the summary into three parts.

Opening: The British were in the northwest and the Dutch in the northeast. The French and Portuguese were clustered together in the southeast while the Spanish were in the southwest. This map is a long strip of jungle separated by two bodies of water (ships cannot navigate between the two bodies via canal). The Spanish built a fort in the west with a short supply line to the front in their campaigns against the British -and- it would remain undetected for more than half the game.

The French and Portuguese eliminated the Dutch quickly before moving east to join the Spanish. The British repelled 3 to 4 waves of attacks (some against multiple armies) but could not replace walls, towers, and military units fast enough. The construction of a dock and the commissioning of a fleet would prove crucial. During a brief lull in the French/Spanish/Portuguese waves, the British moved all 125/200 (62%) soldiers and colonists to the harbor for evacuation by ship -and- a deliberate all or nothing attack on the Spanish town center / settlement in the southwest. As the three armies converged on the British town center / settlement, orders were given for the fleet to set sail along the western coast of the Yucatan.

The French/Portuguese did not build fleets on the eastern coast of the Yucatan, but the Spanish did have some vessels anchored in harbor. The British fleet vastly outnumbered the Spanish fleet. The latter was quickly dispatched and the British were able to land all 125 soldiers and colonists. The landing and attack of the Spanish town center / settlement was a complete surprise since most Spanish units were in the northwest campaigning against an empty/deserted British town center / settlement. In the southwest, both British soldier and colonist participated in the attack. It was an absolute melee, but the Spanish rallied, aided by French and Portuguese reinforcements from the east. The British retreated to the harbor (for the safety of their ships and the open sea) having dealt a near fatal blow to the Spanish.

After the smoke cleared, more than 60% of the Spanish town center / settlement had been turned to rubble. The remaining structures were destroyed by the Imperial Monitor Sovereign of the Seas. The tattered remnants of the British army later re-landed to mop-up and build a trading post (although that small unit was defeated twice by an overwhelming number of French units).

Middle: The British army and colonists were adrift at sea after their first town center / settlement was razed by French/Spanish/Portuguese forces. There was some hope that the Dutch could be resuscitated so a decision was made to start a settlement (town center) in the northeast. The British landed in the northwest (site of their original settlement) and marched east. A new town center and second dock (harbor) was constructed on the eastern coast of the Yucatan. The new shipyard produced several vessels, including the Imperial Monitor Terror. The Terror indeed lived up to her namesake by sitting off the eastern coast and methodically bombarding the Portuguese settlement / town center for the duration of the war. She returned to port only once for repair and relief.

The new settlement grew quickly but soon attracted the attention of the French, Portuguese, and Spanish. The allies were rich with the wealth of the Yucatan (coin, food, and wood) and launched successive attacks. The failure to establish a town center with mills, plantations, stables, and livestock pens prevented the British from conscripting an army sufficient enough to repel repeated attacks. The Spanish also persisted, even though their town center / settlement had been reduced to rubble and returned to the jungle. The British were forced to abandon their town center / settlement (and Fort Pownall) for a second time, retuning to ships moored off the east coast.

The French, Portuguese, and Spanish sacked the new colony and razed the town/fort/docks. Once again, the British were adrift (left to the scourge of scurvy and cholera). The French and Portuguese paroled the coast on horseback which allowed the Caravel William to lie in wait. Once close enough, the William unleashed a succession of broadside barrages to great effect.

It took several days, but eventually the William secured the coast and the British landed a small group of soldiers and colonists. This group marched west and built a town center on the beach a half-mile from their original settlement. Once again the Spanish launched an attack on the new settlement, but this time the British used a hot-air balloon to trace the Spanish back to a fort hidden in the jungle. The Serapis was dispatched and a couple of salvos from her mortar reduced Fort San Francisco to rubble. The Spanish finally resigned.

The French and Portuguese resumed the Spanish campaign against the new settlement (third town center) but control of the seas on the western coast was too much and the Portuguese lost Explorers Don Cam and Henry Gomes in a series of broadside attacks.

End Game, Part 1: Control of the seas would prove the difference. While the Terror continued to strategically pluck critical buildings, the lone Caravel William established a beachhead at Tower Point. The French and Portuguese marched on Tower Hill but were soundly defeated by a unit consisting of Imperial Redcoats and Field Guns. This would be the last organized northeastern excursion by the French and Portuguese and the first time both those armies were felled by the British in an open non-defensive/open field skirmish.

End Game, Part 2: The British army started advancing for the first time in the war. Lord Howe was also building trading posts and forming alliances with the Mayans and Zapotec. The settlers, now unmolested in their northwest town center and settlement and northeast outpost, were producing coin, wood, and food abundantly. British supply lines could now be stretched and it was time to go on the offensive.

The British plan was to squeeze the French and Portuguese with three armies. The army in the southwest would push east against the French while two smaller units would advance from the northwest and cover any escape.

The French were desperate to breakout but were repelled in two significant battles at Gates Depot and Wolfe Pass. Some remnants of the French escaped (were not pursued by the British 3rd) but were crushed by a small garrison (and harbor ships) left at St. Edmund. The French resigned just as the first Imperial Field Guns were ripping into bone and sinew.

Upon the march, the light infantry will cover the front and flanks of the Line, seizing every commanding ground till the line has passed; wherever they may chance to fall in with the enemy they will stand their ground, and never retire to the Battalions, which shall always match up and support them.

The British 3rd and 4th pushed south and converged with the 1st just on the outskirts of the Portuguese town center / settlement. The Terror also pushed close to the shore from the east and kept steady pressure on the Portuguese town center. The garrisoned army and colonists made a frantic push west but the British Army (ranks now swollen with Elite Holcan and Champion Lightning Warriors) was being replenished by barracks and an arsenal close to the front. The Portuguese asked to surrender but the British refused until her army could secure the harbor and march on the town center with pomp and circumstance.

“Brother Soldier do you hear of the news,
There’s Peace both by Land and Sea,
No more the old Blades must be us’d,
Some of Us disbanded must be.”

Sources: The Pluralist and Old Solider by Tim Bobbin and ‘Loss and Recapture of St John’s Newfoundland’ by W. H. Fyers.