June 27, 2009

walking on the moon

People of my generation will remember Michael Jackson at the height of his fame, when he radiated talent, charm, and energy and made us all stare at the TV screen with our mouths open.

Everybody switched on MTV to watch his "Thriller" video. Everybody wanted to have a red leather jacket. And everybody wanted to be able to do the moonwalk, a dance move not invented by MJ, but one that even the Oxford English Dictionary associates with him: "a kind of exaggeratedly slow dance intended to evoke the characteristic weightless movement of astronauts walking on the moon...., associated principally with Michael Jackson (b. 1958), U.S. singer" (OED).

Sadly, at some point, the weightlessness disappeared. Read the obituary in the New York Times here.

And don't miss out on this correction, which includes a mondegreen.

An article on Friday about the death of Michael Jackson misstated the number of songs from his album “Off the Wall” that became No. 1 singles. There were two, not four. The article also misstated part of a comment that Mr. Jackson’s brother Jermaine offered for Mr. Jackson after speaking with reporters. He said, “May Allah be with you always,” not “May our love be with you always.”

June 25, 2009

one of the greatest cop-outs in the English language

Folks, “up to” is one of the greatest cop-outs in the English language. You know what? I’ve got a laptop that gets “up to” 1,000 hours on a charge! Because “up to” just means “something below this number.”
David Pogue in the Times

June 18, 2009


Only in Germany...

what would your kid rather do...

...play with a dog or practice playing the piano?

Yeah, right:
[from an ad for Bechstein pianos, seen in Kassel, Germany]

signs for dogs that can read

Hann Muenden is an idyllic city at the origin of the Weser river in Germany (see above), but it does not seem to be crazy about dogs:

[Note here, otherwise....!]

[Here I may]

June 14, 2009

sausage truffles?

During a recent visit to Germany (more pictures to follow!) did not try this local speciality. Call me boring, but I don't find "sausage truffles" very enticing.