…At The Grindstones

{September 1, 2010}   Shiny Old Things And Being Human

{July 27, 2010}   Korean Musical Tuesday

{July 21, 2010}   Chinese Review Three

{July 19, 2010}   Of Arms and Men


{July 6, 2010}   It’s so Beautiful….

Here’s one of the newer viral videos that people are lolzoring over.
Personally, I think it’s amazing and I would be freaking out myself. I’ve totally cried watching dust devils, and during choice thunderstorms.. I can’t get over how people forget how beautiful nature really is, or refuse to admit it by making fun of this guy. Who cares if he’s high which has been the general first comment, it’s like the viewers aren’t seeing the ridiculously amazing double rainbow- perfectly clear, perfectly formed in front of them, just waiting for him to say something that they can quote and laugh about. Feeling shit is lame, surrendering and appreciating nature is lame I guess. I’m not saying that everyone should become pagan all of a sudden but seriously since when has “it’s been done” become the general attitude towards the history of the world and universe as we know it?

I want to see the Grand Canyon, I want to go up in a Hot Air balloon over Niagra Falls. I want to camp in a dusty desert again, visit historical rivers and stone landmarks and have my mind blown… as these are the very things (minus the hot air balloon) that have always blown the mind of man and started him on his quest for knowledge of things that can’t be explained right away.. and the creation of faith in a power or powers or energies (probably a better word) that made things the way they are..

Let me use a specific example… The symbol for sun in the Ancient Egyptian world- in certain groups as there were several different creation myths… actually, I’ll allow myself to get distracted. There is one creation myth where man was created on a potters wheel and the god, Khunum, created many things of clay.. does it surprise you that the city that he was the patron god of was on the bank of the Nile?

Then we have the Sun god Ra, Re- Horaktey, Atum-Re…. there were a few facets and transformations… who was associated with a Hawk, the highest animal in the sky, closest to the sun, the unexplainable, therefore terrifying and beautiful all at once… The hawk becomes the animal closest to the miracle and therefore is associated with the miracle..

This makes me want to make a video about a few other hieroglyphics and how their meanings make complete and total sense. I remember when I was giving talks on the subject trying to explain and read glyphs to people how most people were surprised that the “eye” doesn’t always mean eye…. that there are more than 20 birds and that there is a complicated grammar.. That will be tomorrow’s video actually, a little lesson on some of the awesome symbols that you will totally be able to remember the next time you are at a museum 🙂

I better go for now, this Beautiful heatwave is making me feel like an ant under a magnifying glass and sadly yet awesomely I need to go sweat over the oven and make some homemade muffins so I don’t have to cook later. I’ll post the recipe tomorrow too hehe


{June 24, 2010}   Sichuan Chinese…

Today I dove back in to learning Mandarin, for a bit. There was an earthquake across central Canada which shocked everyone, since we don’t really get them, I was enjoying a cup of tea and then..

A few things to clarify from the video, Mandarin chinese has 4 accents for speaking, or tones. They are generally over each syllable and the tone can be uuupppp, dowwwn, upanddown, or flat and straight. I do not pronounce HUO-Fire properly in this video..

A little on Sichuan:
-It’s Capital city is Chengdu (Perfect Metropolis) it has mixed terrain with a lot of Tibetan influence and communities..
-Jiuzhaigou National Park is one of it’s treasures or Nature Reserve it’s also called:

And near there, the Pools of the Immortals:

-Sichuan had a terrible terrible earthquake in 2008, which measured an 8, and killed 65, 000 people. They are still recovering from the damage, but managed to get a lot of the touristy stuff back and in action rather quickly and have been rebuilding steadily since then..

Here is a map that better shows the rivers I was trying to point out:

From what I can see on this map there’s a few, some are marked differently on that map than the one in my book but.. my vision isn’t perfect so I can’t tell what is within the boundaries and what isn’t.. I’m still going to think about the province as one with 4 rivers, since I’ll never remember them all..

Info on the Sichuan-Tibet Highway:


How to make DanDan noodles, I love cooking videos, even If I don’t have everything to make them, I might try this sometime though, she’s really good at what she does:

Part 2

Don’t ever stop trying to learn new stuff, even if you think you sound stupid 🙂

We were all beginners once!!


{June 18, 2010}   Good Morning, I’m Norman…

I was out and about in the city the other day and came across this on the side of a building on Dundas East…. and it totally made my day..

Because it reminded me of a character (years later of course ) from a series to teach languages to children. The series was called Big Muzzy or Muzzy in Gondoland was volume one I think.. and the character I am thinking of was called Norman:

Oh he also went by Norbert:

And Carlos:

My library had it mainly in French but also in German once, and I think I took them out every 2 years until I was 20 because I was awful at learning languages (turns out I am much better with the reading, writing and grammar then speaking..

Did anyone else learn a language from Muzzy? Was it as big in Europe as we were told it was

growing up? Wiki : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muzzy_in_Gondoland

Here’s the english version intro, I always thought Corvax was pretty creepy in the series, tried to “clone” the princess to have his way with her:

And Muzzy, the character’s deal – he likes to eat clocks and parking meters.

Takes me waaaay waay back.

Oh- eating a clock:

Maybe it’s time to tackle Spanish this way…hmmm…

..anyway, just wanted to share a little piece of my childhood hehe.


et cetera