Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Feb "Articles of Interest:" Immersion Start, Mardi Gras, Happy 127 Huck Finn, & Adele's Appoggiatura

Tuesday, 21 February 2012 (21.2.12, if you will)

Greetings Upper School Community:

In addition to being the first day of MVS Immersion, today is also Fat Tuesday, better known as Mardi Gras down yonder in New Orleans.  Check out the full schedule of parades, history of Mardi Gras, and the announcement of the King of Rex. “Throw Me Somethin,’ Mister!”

18 February marks the 127th anniversary of the publication of Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.  An interactive edition, including the full selection of drawings from the first edition of this masterwork of American fiction (pardon my humble bias), is available at the UVA e-text site.

The Wall Street Journal article, “Anatomy of a Tear-Jerker,” introduces the musical device called "appoggiatura" to explain why Adele’s songs are so effective at conjuring sadness.  Appoggiatura has my vote for word for the month.

In honor of Presidents Day, NPR carried a fitting homage to Honest Abe, in the form of a 34-foot tower of books built of volumes about our 16th President.

As a point of Ohio pride, 20 February marks the 50th anniversary of John Glenn’s Mercury mission in Friendship 7, culminating in 3 orbits around the earth.  At a recent NASA event,  Commander Glenn harangued the space agency for not making better use of the International Space Station.  He continues to be feisty, even at the awesome age of 90!

And as culminating “wicked cool” news, researchers in Siberia succeeded in reviving and growing a plant from a flower frozen over 32,000 years ago.  How about that, Mr. Birdseye! 

That’s all for now.  Have a safe start to Immersion, stay warm, and keep in touch!

Sam Wagner
Head of Upper School

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