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About cavaradossi

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  1. cavaradossi

    The Dinner Guest Connundrum.

    Hikari, just call me Morse! One thing I neglected to mention about Maria Callas is that all her musical and dramamtic genius, as well as her charisma, come through on all her recordings, both studio and live performance. Even the multitudes of Callas lovers who never saw her live, like me, feel as though they have so vivid is her singing and persona sight unseen.
  2. cavaradossi

    The Dinner Guest Connundrum.

    At long last love! I've searched seemingly forever to find this particular thread. Hikari put me onto it, as indeed she did this forum, and I believe I may have a party list to share. IIRC! Herlodk said six guests, though it looks as though it's been extended to eight. I'll go with six, though. 1. Pharaoh Khufu, the builder of the Great Pyramid of Giza. - Khufu is a mysterious figure despite having built history's most amazing and mysterious structure, one that has fascinated mankind for nearly five thousand years. I would want him to regale us with tales about the inspiration for and actual building of this monumental pile that still strikes awe in the hearts and minds of all observers. I would also ask him the burning question: "Just where the heck are you buried, man? All of that labor and you weren't even laid to rest in it - at least as far as archeologists have been able to determine." 2. Maria Callas, La Divina, as the Italians named her. I fell immediately in love with and under the spell of this thrilling singer and her unique voice at first hearing when I was fifteen. The spell has never faded, only grown over the following decades as I quickly collected every recorded scrap of her singing, both in studio and in live performances. Yet the source of her almost instinctive ability to bring her various operatic characters to life through seemingly millions of shadings of words and musical lines in her voice remains mysterious to this day to those who study her voice and art. Combine this with a charisma that most movie stars would kill for, one that reached across the stage lights and enthralled her audiences, an acting ability that was hers alone, and her physical beauty and one has, well, La Divina! The question I would want to ask her is simple: "Yes, I know you used to answer that question by crediting hard work and intense study of the words and the music, but, Miss Callas, how did you really do it?" 3. Homer. Enough said, but one of the questions I would like to ask this author of two of the greatest "books" ever written is what he thinks of the the multitude of English translations that have flooded out from publishers over the last several centuries, and which ones he considers to be the most successful. Since he died nearly three thousand years ago, one assumes he has had plenty of time to follow these translations and form opinions about them. And, of course, I would want to ask him how much of what he wrote was based on history and how much did he invent. 4. Greta Garbo - the most beautiful and mysterious woman to ever step in front of a movie camera. The old saying that they don't make them like they used to applies in spades to Garbo. I wouldn't have any questions for Garbo, really; it would be enough to sit across from her and drink in all that beauty. Of course, from reports of her few social interactions, she would be unlikely to want to talk anyway, though I suspect Pharaoh Khufu might intrigue her somewhat. You know, two mysterious historical figures, legends in their own times and ever after... 5. Johnny Carson. I couldn't resist inviting this unequaled television comedy talent, who kept me in stitches ever since his debut on NBC's The Tonight Show back in the early sixties. Even comic legends were in awe of Carson's talent, not least his ability to instantly turn any little unexpected happening or comment by someone into a moment of unrivaled hilarity. There was only one Johnny Carson, and no one knows that better than all the nighttime comics who have tried to follow in his footsteps. It is a constitutional impossibility that my dinner party could be a dud with Carson at the table. 6. Jane Austen. I am ashamed to admit that, despite may many decades of reading, I only began reading Jane Austen about fifteen years ago. Inhad come to know the stories of her books through movies and tv adaptations and enjoyed them, but I never considered actually getting into the books themselves because I was under the impression that she was a woman's author. Then one day I came across a male coworker who was reading Pride and Prejudice on his smartphone. I thought: "Well, if he can read Austen, why not me, too?" I went to the bookstore, took down from a wolf a copy of P&P and read the immortal first sentence: "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife." I chuckled, of course, but it was what followed that induced instantaneous Love-at-Second-Sentence: "However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighborhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of surrounding familes, that he is considered as the rightful property of someone or other of their daughters." I instantly said aloud: "I've got to READ this woman!" I bought a volume containing all the books, and thus began a great adventure in reading. Such a master of the word was this lady that she keeps me enthralled sentence by sentence. There's no question in my mind but that the two greatest writers in the English language are Shakespeare and Austen. I've read the books three times, and I know I'll be reading Jane Austen the rest of my life. There you have my guest list: one mysterious and powerful historical figure who has left an architectural treasure for the world, two giant literary geniuses, and three performing luminaries of the highest order. I think I'm going to be royally entertained.
  3. cavaradossi

    The Language (and travel) Thread

    Umm, it strikes me, Carol, that I've not seen or heard the word "garret" used in American English in decades. I can't imagine why since it's a perfectly fine word describing a floor found in many a house. I've even got one in mine, though I never go up there or even refer to it. If it ever crosses my mind, it's to worry about the possibility of wasps or bats taking up residence there. Thankfully, that's never happened! That business about "so" bugs me, too., as does the persistent misuse of the word "is" when discussing plural subjects. It makes me want to shout into the night sky "The word is "are"' , people! News anchors on both TV and radio almost unfailingly make this mistake, as do everyday people in conversation and writing. Set me straight on this: English is still taught in schools, right? As for the now ancient, set in stone, endless use of "like", I've long since gotten over the useless annoyance I used to feel about it. From time to time, though, I do wonder how they decide that "like" should be used here and not there, and not there but here in a sentence. In other words, are there rules about this use? As far as the use of double "really" goes, I'm expecting the day when it becomes the norm to use the word three times or more in combination. After all, isn't that what progression is all about? Oh, a great day, it's a comin'!
  4. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Hikari Re Charles Dance as Lannister Sr. Another impressive aspect of his performance is how ramrod straight is his posture. Not many people of his age can bring that off, and it certainly adds to the powerful effect he makes in the role. Also, those steel cold eyes. Lannister Sr. is not a man on whose bad side you want to get. His icy rage when he told his dwarf son Tyrian exactly why he despised him was shattering. Even that little monster, the teenaged king, was clearly nervous around his grandfather. His fear was the first sane moment I've seen from him. In this third season I was wondering who that old queen was whose granddaughter is to marry the young Lannister king, whose name keeps eluding me.. Even though elderly, she looked so familiar. She turns out to be DIana Rigg! I haven't read anything about her in so many years that I thought she might no longer be with us. A check on IMDb.com shows she's been pretty active in recent years. Good news, and she is very effective in her role on GoT. The old energy that lit up her performances in the past is still there, not to mention her beautiful face, though no longer what it once was, is still striking. Talk about aging gracefully!
  5. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Hikari it's good I took your advice to continue into season 3 of Game of Thrones because the show has really come alive during it. I've seen the first seven episodes of season 3 so far and am deeply invested now. What's that young "Mother of Dragons" up to really (don't answer that!), and what outrage will that head of the Lannister clan impose on his adult children next? I would say I'm having fun with the show, but, well, you know...all that violence and unspeakable cruelty... If I closely examined how I'm responding to the show right now I'd feel dirty. One of the continuing surprises of GoT is all the amazing visuals done on a TV series budget. Much of it doesn't come off as the CGI it has to be, but looks real. I'm also taken not just with the big moments and events, but much of the small things as well. Who would have thought just how powerful and heartwarming one character irritatedly sticking a fork in a piece of meat so a one-handed man could cut a slice for himself. Since this woman and man are ostensibly enemies at this point, the unexpectedness of the action gave me a catch in my throat and had me danged near to tears. As it was, I let out a spontaneous cry of "yeah"! The way the show is going is making it look awfully like I'm going to have to buy the series after all some time in the future. For the first two seasons I doubted I would even be interested in seeing it again. Clearly, things have changed.
  6. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Caya i, too, appreciate when people don't post spoilers. One has to develop almost a sixth sense when one is reading a post that is likely to contain some, or even a lot. When I find I'm reading one of those, I hastily bail. I am a bit curious about trying the first book of Game of Thrones, if only to see if it might appeal to me more than the TV series. I've been a voracious reader my entire life, and that sort of thing has happened before, though it usually concerned movies rather than TV series. The big exception to that was HBO's True Blood, a show I truly enjoyed. After the fourth season, I decided to giive Charlaine Harris's Southern Vampire Mysteries a try, and was hooked before I had even gotten to the bottom of the first page of the first book, Dead Until Dark. The TV series decayed in its final season, but Harris's books continued to entertain me almost to the end. That end was a real letdown though; the 13th novel, Dead Ever After, displeased many of the series' long time readers, me included. I later came to terms with it, but I still wonder what the author was thinking when she wrote it.
  7. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    I see I'm ranked as a Trainee Detective Constable. Just call me Gavin Troy!
  8. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Carol the Dabbler Thanks for the tips on finding topics here on the Sherlock forum. I was truly lost there for a while. It's great to hear I'm not the only one who needs to bond (or, as you put it, relate to) at least one character in a show to enjoy it. The one exception to that I can recall was, curiously, Seinfeld. In that case, it wasn''t any of the characters that amused me especially, but the show's actual premise, a group of NYC snobs who didn't like anyone or anything. I don't know why that worked for me, but it did. It entertained me season after season until the end, and when the series came out on DVD way back when, I bought the whole thing. Then an odd thing happened. I began watching season one and discovered to my dismay that Seinfeld no longer worked for me. I stopped watching and have never gone back. The season sets, other than #one, sit on the shelf still in their cellophane wrapping. I don't even notice they are there anymore. I think that Seinfeld is a prime example of a series that was so of its time, that it no longer works in a later context. In contrast, Frazier, like I Love Lucy, is as gloriously funny as it ever was.
  9. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Hikari Unfortunately, I haven't bonded with either Flynn's or Ian Glenn's characters on Game of Thrones, though they both have a decidedly enigmatic aspect to them, Glenn's more than Flynn's I would say. Those enigmatic qualities should have given them extra interest for me, but, alas, not enough. I think my real problem with the show is that I'm really not a fantasy fan, that is if it's not The Hobbit/Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter. George R. R. Martin was once a favorite of mine, but that was when he was writing very good science fiction. As with another favorite SF writer of mine, Robert Silverberg, I dropped Martin when he took up fantasy writing. I did once give one of Silverberg's later fantasy novels a read just out of curiosity, but found it dull. I lament the loss of these two fine writers to one of my favorate fields of fiction, SF. Yeah, yeah, I can hear that little wagging voice in the back of my mind saying "Cav, you're an idiot. All fiction is fantasy on some level." I not so kindly tell the voice to shut up and stop intruding on my reality! I hear what you're saying about Lucy Liu's Joan Watson. Even in that first season, the only one I've seen so far, I had trouble accepting a woman as SH's Dr. Watson. It's certainly not that I have a problem with women doctors (I see two of them and get along great with them), but having a woman Dr. Watson undercuts the fraternal, friendly bond between Sherlock and John so essential to their appeal as a duo. The other thing is, as I watched that first season, I wondered what in the world was the matter with Mz. LIu, who was portraying the good doctor in an almost somnolent manner. I was used to seeing her much more lively in her previous TV and movie outings, so I had to believe the character was either written that way or LIu was directed to perform like that. Whatever the reason, her acting combined with my inmate problem with a lady Watson was an ungoing annoyance throughout the season. I get the impression that she kind of takes a back seat in the upcoming seasons, not an ideal solution to a misguided problem from the show's very conception. They Who Shall Not Be Named Because I'm Sick of Them... Love it!!!
  10. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Hikari i meant to ask you if your library offers graphic novels. Since they have been so popular for years now and so many big and successful films have been based on them, I wondered if libraries have them, have you been able to fix your television situation yet? I'm without cable myself right now since their Box went dead on me. I just haven't been too inclined to get it replaced as I'm, surprisingly, not missing it at all, I have years and years of collecting of video tapes recorded off tv, and purchased ones, Laserdiscs, DVDs, and now Blu-rays, not to mention Netflix rentals, that I'm scarcely aware I'm missing live television. I get my news from the radio and internet, along with TIME, and since that consists of mostly anti-Trump diatribes I don't feel I'm missing much, other than the sight of all those politicians and news anchors having at each other. They have an over inflated sense of sense of self importance if they think we're all held in thrall by their performances. BTW, I've been surprised at the poor quality of news on the internet, both the visual and written kind. The video clips are too short and convey almost no information, while the writing, while longer than the clips, is almost invariably not any more enlightening. Disappointing. Umm... soon I'll be sounding like TAS!
  11. cavaradossi

    Just a question?

    Hikari I finally found the Tin Dispatch Box Lounge after almost coming to the point of dispair over stumbling onto it. Help came when I decided to leave off searching for it on this site and Googling it instead. i don't know what's going on over at William Smith's movies website, not least because he hasn't posted anything since last year. I hope he's alright. I also hope you're doing better than the last time I heard from you. Have you managed to avoid this flu going around? I'm about to start season three of Game of Thrones, but I'm also fighting over my growing inclination to shuck the whole thing at this point. I just can't get turned on to it. I think it 's that old thing that I need to bond with at least one character in a movie or TV series, and not necessarily a lead, to get into these things. After all these hours of viewing that hasn't happened yet with GoT. Well, the baby dragons are kind of fun, but that's not something I can say about the rest of the characters or the storylines. I keep forgetting to see if Netflix is carrying Elementary, because I am somewhat curious to see where that show has gone since the first season, the only one I've seen of the series. I've just finished watching Victoria & Abdul. I knew vaguely about that friendship, but not to the detail this film displayed. Excellent performance by Judi Dench, but that wasn't a surprise, since when has she ever not given one? i paid absolutely no attention to the Oscars this year. I don't even think I've read who won what, nor do I care. I think I may have mentioned that I finally found my copy of the complete Sherlock Holmes, but I've got several books clamoring for my attention before I divee back into it. Still, it's nice to know where it is if I get the urge.
  12. cavaradossi

    The 'Other Detectives' Lounge

    Hi, Hikari, how's it going? I finally made it over here, and it looks like the site will provide much interesting reading. I was taken with your description of the original George Gently and his world, and this reminded me that I was interested in seeking out some of those books. Funny how things can slip one's mind. I rewatched the first three seasons of Endeavour over the last two weeks, and had just as good a time with them as I did on first viewing. Th fourth season just arrived in the mail, but it will take a few hours, I suppose, for it to reach room temperature. Meanwhile, I'm itching to get at it! As far as GG discs go, I haven't purchased seasons six thought eight yet. Indeed, season eight is still unseen by me as Netflix doesn't have it. They need to get up to speed on some of these things.

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