Archive for July, 2014

A time-lapse map of every nuclear explosion since 1945

July 31st, 2014 by Roger Darlington

Japanese artist Isao Hashimoto has created a beautiful, undeniably scary time-lapse map of the 2053 nuclear explosions which have taken place between 1945 and 1998, beginning with the Manhattan Project’s “Trinity” test near Los Alamos and concluding with Pakistan’s nuclear tests in May of 1998. This leaves out North Korea’s two alleged nuclear tests in […]

Posted in World current affairs | Comments (0)

American presidents (3): Gerald Ford

July 30th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

This week, I was back at the City Lit to resume the course on post-war American presidents. For Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, our lecturer was Paul Hadjipieris (his parents are Cypriot and his wife is American). His approach was rather different from the lecturers on Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. He focused very much […]

Posted in History | Comments (0)

An understated performance from Nicolas Cage?!?

July 29th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

Well, yes, in the new independent movie “Joe” which I have reviewed here.

Posted in Cultural issues | Comments (0)

Nicolas Cage losing his s**t

July 29th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

I’ve just been to see the latest movie starring Nicolas Cage who is rather noted for his histrionic performances. In background reading about his new film, I found a reference to this YouTube compilation of some of his most over-the-top thespian scenes. Enjoy

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments (0)

How life on Earth as we know it could have been transformed just two years ago – and only a few scientists noticed

July 28th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

I was at a barbecue in West Sussex this weekend and had an interesting chat with a family friend called Gerry Bond who told me about a recent event that could have changed life on Earth as we currently enjoy it. On 23 July 2012, the sun unleashed two massive clouds of plasma that barely […]

Posted in Science & technology | Comments (0)

The best photograph of my granddaughter Catrin and me

July 28th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

This photograph of me with my three and half year old granddaughter Catrin was taken by Vee’s nephew David at the home of his brother in Egham at a family gathering this summer. David had a copy framed for me as a birthday present. I love it. Thanks a million, David.

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (3)

Did Salieri kill Mozart?

July 27th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

In 1979, there were the first performances of a play by Peter Shaffer called “Amadeus” which postulated that Antonio Salieri drove Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to an early death or even poisoned him. I did not see the play but I did view the 1984 American film “Amadeus” directed by Miloš Forman [see my review here]. […]

Posted in Cultural issues, History | Comments (2)

This week’s films – my reviews of three very different movies

July 26th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

As regular visitors to this blog will know, I am a keen movie fan. This week, I have seen three films all very different: “The Railway Man”, set during and after World War Two, with some harrowing scenes – my review here. “Begin Again”, located in today’s New York with lots of songs and a real […]

Posted in Cultural issues | Comments (0)

How safe is it to fly?

July 25th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

There have been three aviation disasters in the last week: the shooting down last Thursday of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew, the crashing of TransAsia Airways flight GE222 while trying to land at a Taiwanese airport on Wednesday, killing 48 and injuring 10, and the […]

Posted in World current affairs | Comments (0)

American presidents (2): Richard M Nixon

July 24th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

This summer, the City Lit in central London is running a series of evening courses with a session on most of the various post-war US presidents. I missed the one on Kennedy but have joined the course this week with the session on Lyndon B Johnson, about whom I have done a blog posting. Last […]

Posted in History | Comments (1)