He Won…..

My son Caolan won a science prize last week.  He did a project on Asthma – and he built a bio-mechanical lung to show how the lungs worked.  Excellent stuff. Well done Caolan.

This is a pic of the display….

A picture of the Display 

Check out the Meccano… I knew it was worth keeping!

Bio Lung - Meccano Style….

The newsletter this week

Beech Hall Griffin Newsletter

A Night at the Country Opera

Opera Tickets

I’m not an Opera critic, merely and enthusiastic consumer of the art form – and unashamedly biased in the southerly direction of  WAM. This opera was one of the best and most exciting productions I’ve seen and the best at Clonter by far.  The music of course is what holds this Opera together – the story simply adds to the sheer enjoyment. I spotted a small but highlt apreciated few bars of Figaro towards the end of the second act and I rather hoping that was a subtile invitation for Figaro coming to Clonter next year.   If it is I’l be there for every performance! 

Don Giovanni may not be the most upstanding of operatic characters – but surely he is the most interesting! 

Handy Latin

I quite like these Latin phrases. Pronounciation however is up to you.

Nescio quid dicas I don’t know what you’re talking about
Nemo hic adest illius nominis There is no one here by that name
Ita erat quando hic adveni. It was that way when I got here
Nihil declarandum I have nothing to declare
Raptus regaliter Royally screwed
Ut si! As if!
Vescere bracis meis Eat my shorts
Re vera, potas bene Say, you sure are drinking a lot
Noli me vocare. Ego te vocabo. Don’t call me. I’ll call you.
Nihil curo de ista tua stulta superstitione I’m not interested in your dopey religious cult
Canis meus id comedit My dog ate it
Die dulci freure Have a nice day
Fac ut vivas Get a life
Fac me cocleario vomere! Gag me with a spoon!
Recedite, plebes! Gero rem imperialem Stand aside, little people! I am here on official business
Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabris, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam. I have a catapult. Unless you give me all of your money, I will fling an enormous rock at your head.
Utinam barbari spatioum proprium tuum invadant May barbarians invade your personal space
Quo signo nata es? What’s your sign?
Romani quidem artem amatoriam invenerunt… You know, the Romans invented the art of love…
Te audire no possum. Musa sapientum fixa est in aure. I can’t hear you. I have a banana in my ear.
Utinam coniurati te in foro interficiant May conspirators assasinate you in the hall
Magister mundi sum! I am the master of the universe!
Non sum pisces I am not a fish
Radix lecti Couch potato
Quantum materiae materietur marmota monax si marmota monax materiam possit materiari? How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
Unitam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant May faulty logic undermine your entire philosophy
Cogito ergo sum I think, therefore I am
Cogito ergo doleo I think, therefore I am depressed
Senito aliquos togatos contra me conspirare I think some people in togas are plotting against me
Vah! Denuone latine loquebar? Me ineptum. Interdum modo elabitur. Oh! Was I speaking Latin again? Silly me. Sometimes it just sort of slips out.
Nihili est – in vita priore ego imperator romanus fui That’s nothing; in a previous life I was a Roman Emperor
Aio, quantitas magna frumentorum est Yes, that is a very large amount of corn
Perscriptio in manibus tabellariorum est The cheque is in the post
Non illigitamus carborundum Don’t let the b’stards grind you down
Nonne macescis? Have you lost weight?
Minime senuisti! You haven’t aged a bit!
Id tibi praebet speciem lepidissimam! It looks great on you!
Capillamentum? Haudquaquam conieci esse! A wig? I never would have guessed!
Braccae tuae aperiuntur Your fly is open
Subucula tua apparet Your slip is showing
In dentibus anticis frustum magnum spiniciae habes You have a big piece of spinach in your front teeth
Abutebaris modo subjunctivo You’ve been misusing the subjunctive
Heus, hic nos omnes in agmine sunt! Hey, we’re all in line here!
Non, mihi ignosce, credo me insequentem esse No, excuse me, I believe I’m next
Nonne de novo eboraco venis? You’re from New York, aren’t you?

What does RE: Mean?

My daughter, Aoife, was asking what does RE: mean in an email. Well….

“Re” is a Latin word meaning “about”, as is ”

“Re” has probably been used in correspondence since before there was correspondence in English.

Now, most people think of “RE” as an abbreviation for “REgarding”.

Blog at the Ballet

Last night I went to the ballet at the Royal Opera house in Covent Garden. The ballet in question was Onegin -based on Pushkins novel and performed by the Royal Ballet Company.

I would tend to be more inclined to opera, however Onegin is truly stunning in every possible way. In three acts this ballet tells the story of a woman’s unrequited love, dueling-to-the-death noblemen and the tables being turned on the unrequited love.

I wont bore you with details of the story – its all well known http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugene_Onegin

The performance was truly stunning – both a visual and auditory treat. Leaving the dancing aside, the sets were visually stunning and the lighting was world class. The music is drawn from Tchaikovsky – and I think is fairly bland throughout, however that simply makes the aspect of the dancing all the more enticing, passionate and very engaging.

There was not one second through any of the 3 acts that I was not totally and utterly enthralled – two intervals meant a glass of champagne in the bar and even with that, I was still eager to get back to my seat.

I am not an expert in or on ballet and I didn’t know if the performances were good or just really good but from what I saw, the dancing was truly stunning – effortless – especially between Onegin and Tatania – the scene where she dreams of her lover and the end scene where he pleads for her love and – she – following duty banishes him forever – but not without emotional upheaval – which was totally palpable when the curtain went down.

All in all – a superb evening and I’d recommend it to anyone. I always thought ballet might be a little inaccessible if you didn’t understand the complex nature of the dance. I was wrong – it moved me immensely.

Ticket to the Ballet