A Ship With A View

The Lakes were lovely. We had excellent weather, and the scenery was beautiful. S and I took many, many photographs. We walked up Cat Bells, went to the Sellafield Visitors Centre (which, disappointingly, does not sell fluorescent T-shirts saying “I’ve been to Sellafield”), went on a boat trip, and also managed to do a bit of reading in the evenings.

At Brantwood, John Ruskin’s former home, we happened across a performance of The Tempest by Illyria, who were excellent: a company of 5 actors, a simple set and a rollicking performance, in the best tradition of traveling players (being a Pratchett geek, I thought of Vitoller’s Men in Wyrd Sisters).

We also happened across a “3 for £10” deal on SF classics in a bookshop, so I bought Ursula Le Guin’s The Left Hand of Darkness, Joe Haldeman’s The Forever War and Walter Miller’s A Canticle for Leibowiz. I’ve read Canticle, so that’s gone to S. The Forever War‘s grinding tale of the pointlessness of war came to mind when I saw Fahrenheit 9/11 on Sunday night. My favourite was The Left Hand of Darkness, though, for the evocative and touching description of an alien society. Recommended.

Fahrenheit 9/11 was biased and polemical and relied too much on pathos (or do I mean bathos?), but was quite terrifying for all that. I hope lots of Americans are watching it.

8 thoughts on “A Ship With A View

  1. Subject: Pathos and bathos
    I expect I’m missing a joke here (what with not having seen Moore’s film myself yet), but just in case I’m not: Pathos is

    look at all these grieving mothers and heartbroken families and poor injured kittens, boo-hoo

    and bathos is

    My fellow Americans! Now is a great hour in our noble nation’s history, the opportunity for us to make a great sacrifice that will ring out down the halls of posterity, to make our nation truly great once again, to save the world from a peril the like of which it has never known before. So, please, give generously to the Snugglebunnies Appeal for Slightly Unhappy Children. Thank you.

    1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
      A secondary meaning is insincere pathos, apparently (thus said Google, anyway). That was the one I was thinking of, anyway.

      1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
        The Shorter Oxford or Chambers know nothing of this. But what would they know? All hail Google!

        1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
          Oh well, in that case I suspect I may have perpetrated an Americanism.

          Hello, by the way. Long time no see. I hope all’s well with you. I was showing S some photographs of LiveWires only this evening. The RSS feed is better than reloading the page every hour, by the way 😉

          1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
            Hi. I was wondering whether either the style or the IP address (or even the choice of dictionaries) would give me away. I attempted to moderate the former slightly, in the interests of giving you more of a challenge :-).

            My aggregator does check the RSS feed every few hours. But when in mid-conversation and bored I don’t see why I shouldn’t hit “refresh” occasionally.

            — g

            1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
              It was the IP address that did it, but only because it appears in some list archives. Although I did have some suspicions before I looked.

              At one stage your machine was loading an image at the same minute of every hour, which looked too regular to be someone hitting reload occasionally. Maybe your computer was in mid-conversation and bored?

              1. Subject: Re: Pathos and bathos
                Eep. It’s not meant to be doing that, and I can’t think why it would be. That’s mighty strange. Is it still doing it? If my computer is in mid-conversation then I need to check the state of my firewall. Bored is probably good, though.

                Would you and S like to come for dinner some time?

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