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  • Christmas 2012

    Posted by David Foster on December 24th, 2012 (All posts by )

    Newgrange is an ancient structure in Ireland so constructed that the sun, at the exact time of the winter solstice, shines directly down a long corridor and illuminates the inner chamber. More about Newgrange here and here.

    Grim has an Arthurian passage about the Solstice.

    Don Sensing has thoughts astronomical, historical, and theological about the Star of Bethlehem.

    A wonderful 3-D representation of the Iglesia San Luis De Los Franceses. Just click on the link–then you can look around inside the cathedral. Use arrow keys or mouse to move left/right, up/down, and shift to zoom in, ctrl to zoom out.

    Vienna Boys Choir, from Maggie’s Farm

    Lappland in pictures, from Neptunus Lex

    Snowflakes and snow crystals, from Cal Tech. Lots of great photos

    A Romanian Christmas carol, from The Assistant Village Idiot

    In the bleak midwinter, from The Anchoress

    Rick Darby has some thoughts on the season. More here.

    A Christmas reading from Thomas Pynchon.

    The first radio broadcast of voice and music took place on Christmas Eve, 1906. Or maybe not. But on the other hand

    An air traffic control version of The Night Before Christmas.

    Ice sculptures from the St Paul winter carnival

    O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, sung by Enya

    Gerard Manley Hopkins

    Jeff Sypeck on a winter garden

     

    6 Responses to “Christmas 2012”

    1. Robert Schwartz Says:

      Merry Christmas to all of the Chicago Boyz

    2. Mike_K Says:

      Great photos. A couple of comments. I had a ship that was driven by vinegar and baking soda. Jet power.

      Penicillin had no effect on TB. It was the discovery of streptomycin that brought the cure. The story is here. Waksman got the Nobel Prize for this discovery and the real discoverer, Schatz, was ignored. Monkey business in science is old. The Nobel Prize for insulin was just another example.

      The erector set shown is early. A patient of mine was the engineer, an immigrant from England, who was hired by the inventor to design and build structures with the set. He hadn’t been able to sell the sets because people didn’t know what to do with them. By 1920 or so, Macy’s and Gimbel’s got my patient to build bridges across the checkout aisles in their stores for Christmas. In those days, there were not cash registers of each department. The customer got into a line at the exit much like present day supermarkets to pay for the purchases. The bridges were a sensation and aided sales considerably. I had a set in 1944. I don’t see them anymore.

    3. Sgt. Mom Says:

      My dad had an Erector set – with a little electric engine – that he must have gotten sometime in the Thirties. We used to play with it ourselves, when we visited my grandparents; a million little metal beams, plantforms and screws and nuts! Alas, it was one of the things lost in the runaway brushfire that burned their house in 2003.

    4. David Foster Says:

      The Erector Set brand was bought by Meccano:

      http://www.erector.us/brand/history.html

      …which started as a British company, but turned into a French one:

      http://www.meccano.com/brand/history.html

      (note the Dutch kids wearing ties)

      (also note insourcing of Meccano manufacturing to France)

    5. David Foster Says:

      Here’s Neptunus Lex’s video Christmas card from 2011

      …and a story at The Lexicans: Christmas Eve at Sea…more stories in the comments.

    6. Death 6 Says:

      A most interesting site contained in Don Sensings comments is http://www.bethlehemstar.net/

      I am fortunate to live in the same town, College Station, Texas, as Rick Larson who developed and widely presents a multimedia rendition of his research. Rick and I became acquainted through support of some local Christian projects. He is a lawyer by education and very talented in practicing business law, especially intellectual property law, and my younger son was very laudatory concerning a university business law course he took from Rick. I have been fortunate to have seen his presentation a couple of times. Astounding best sums it up in both content and the research methodology. If you ever get a chance, see it in person.

      Rick has also done some astrological investigation using the same very powerful mathematical computer program into the crucifixion events as well and they are also compelling.

      Merry Christmas, no matter which calendar you might be using.

      Mike