CRAIG CONLEY (Prof. Oddfellow) is recognized by Encarta as “America’s most creative and diligent scholar of letters, words and punctuation.” He has been called a “language fanatic” by Page Six gossip columnist Cindy Adams, a “cult hero” by Publisher’s Weekly, and “a true Renaissance man of the modern era, diving headfirst into comprehensive, open-minded study of realms obscured or merely obscure” by Clint Marsh. An eccentric scholar, Conley’s ideas are often decades ahead of their time. He invented the concept of the “virtual pet” in 1980, fifteen years before the debut of the popular “Tamagotchi” in Japan. His virtual pet, actually a rare flower, still thrives and has reached an incomprehensible size. Conley’s website is OneLetterWords.com.
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A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.
Today — April 26, 2015

Precursors (permalink)

There was a time before the Internet axiom, "What has been seen cannot be unseen."  We find proof in Seen & Unseen, or Monologues of a Homeless Snail by Yone Noguchi, 1897.



> read more from Precursors . . .


Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)

The phrase "Love is self-devouring" delivers but a single Google result!  Here's the uroboros encircling Cupid, from Sir Walter Ralegh: A Tragedy by William John Dixon and illustrated by N. C. Bishop-Culpeper, 1897.



[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
> read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)

When we learned that our favorite website, Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion, was drifting into a peaceful slumber, our first wish was that the site forever spook but never petrify.  (See our anagram.)  But the site's intrepid investigator, HGB2, offers some anagrams of his own:

As Long-Forgotten slumbers on in a state of hibernation, you may begin to feel melancholy and alone. I would suggest going out into that serene and lovely front yard, letting the grass and the trees restore your spirits. In other words, if you yourself feel long forgotten, our advice is: Go to front glen.

On your way out, as you leave the building, you might mutter absentmindedly—and with perhaps with a hint of bitterness—the cliché, "Last person out, turn off the lights," forgetting that there's no electricity in the world of the Mansion. Amused, we remind you: No front toggle.

If we allow it, this may recall to our minds that it isn't the technology that charms us, but simple, timeless tricks and illusions. So easily we forget that it's an old-fashioned magic show: Forget not long.

(See why we shudder at the thought of Long-Forgotten going on hiatus?!)

> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Colorful Allusions (permalink)
"You are my very lost, precious 'Snowflake.'"  From Thrilling Life Stories for the Masses, 1892.  But as comedian Lewis Black reminds us, "We are all like snowflakes."


> read more from Colorful Allusions . . .


The Right Word (permalink)
"A sentence should be so constructed that the writer's thought shall produce the strongest impression of which it is capable." —Practical English Grammar and Correspondence, 1889

Here's what an impressive sentence should do, from The Letters of Charles Dickens, 1893.  The caption reads, "After the sentence."


> read more from The Right Word . . .


Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
"O hold your tongue, my pretty parrot, lay not the blame upon me."  From Illustrated British Ballads, Old and New, 1894.


[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
> read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


Is Today The Day? (permalink)
26
April 2015

“Today is the day to flare up like fire.”

—Marius Damas, Approaching Naxalbari, 1991

From the outrageous to the inspirational to the hilarious, here’s a daily reminder to break out of the old grind and do something unexpected, for the fun, the challenge, or the heck of it.

If today simply isn’t your day, click here to have a different day.


Music Box Moment (permalink)
Do you deserve a nostalgic breather?  Through the delicate workings of the music box, even the most dramatic compositions seem to play only for you.  You’ll hear even a very familiar piece in a whole new way.  Courtesy of home recording pioneer Ken Clinger, here’s today’s music box selection.  It will sound surprisingly good even through built-in computer speakers, and it will cut through the ambient noise of the office without being distracting.

Featured in Today’s Music Box:
Six Waltzes #4 (Brahms)
performed by Ken Clinger
If you could use another Music Box Moment, choose a piece:


Today’s Color Palette: Abecedarian (more info)
Abecedarian is the name of the color palette featured today, created by Faded Jeans. The palette consists of the following colors:

• hex #FFDBC4 — Cloudy Chariot
• hex #B87064 — Abecedarian
• hex #720505 — Red Queen Pincushion
• hex #543843 — Maharajah
• hex #ADC7BE — Crocodile Tears

Gazing upon this remarkable palette is like scanning a bookcase in a dream of a long-forgotten but finally rediscovered library in one's house, each colorful spine awakening cherished memories of neglected wisdom. Many thanks to Faded Jeans for this great honor.
> learn more about this palette at ColourLovers . . .


There’s a Signpost Up Ahead (permalink)
One's life path is marked by crossroads and signposts.  If you are confronted with making a choice today, perhaps the signpost displayed here will help to characterize your situation and guide you to make a decision.  If you need more guidance, refresh this page for another symbol.  If both signs are the same, perhaps any choice will lead to the same outcome.

The signs are inspired by a system of symbols entitled "Spiritual Diagnosis," developed by Dr. Robert McNary of Montana.  Dr. McNary actually creates nine-faceted mandala charts for people and interprets the symbols with uncanny accuracy.  Dr. McNary's web site is RockyMountainAstrologer.com.
> view a larger version of your signpost . . .
Yesterday — April 25, 2015

Nonsense Dept. (permalink)

"This nonsense must be stopped, he said."  From An African Millionaire by Grant Allen, 1897.



> read more from Nonsense Dept. . . .


Precursors (permalink)

Here's a precursor to Wenceslao Moreno's "Señor Wences" act, from A History of Advertising from the Earliest Times by Henry Sampson, 1874.



> read more from Precursors . . .


Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
The great transformation from Belle and the Dragon by Arthur Edward Waite, 1894.


[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
> read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


Strange Dreams (permalink)
"How could they trust a man who has 'a special wire' in his dreams?" exclaimed Macdougal, from Miss Parson's Adventure by William Clark Russell, 1894.


If you have a strange dream to share, send it along!
> read more from Strange Dreams . . .



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Original Content Copyright © 2015 by Craig Conley. All rights reserved.