Jun 15

Just good enough for a national museum’s front porch

Here we all are, getting set to learn what it means to be British at the British Museum.

That’s not what you learn at the British Museum, actually, but we saw a lot of great artifacts. Here is a selection I shared on the site last month.

We were very pleased that Adam got to come and traipse around London with us for a weekend. Always nice to hear another accent you understand. We also got to see where seven-times or so removed ancestor immigrated from. Mostly we were just happy to see our friend.

Jun 15

Panoramas from Liberty

We were just installing some drawer pulls that we bought in London. Supposedly they were salvage from homes in India. Liberty is a high-end boutique kind of place. Outrageously cool stuff at often outrageous prices. We were there for tea.

The drawer pulls were inexpensive. So we sat there independently counting up how many drawers and cabinets we had. (We arrived at the same number every time!) And then we started picking out mixed and matching sets of the tiny ceramic knobs. They look pretty sharp now that we have them installed.

Anyway, since I was doing that, I figured I could return to Liberty here today with two large pictures I took. Click to embiggen them!

Jun 15

The closest pastures are on your left

(Extra material from our trip to England.)

As you travel over to Stonehenge in the late spring or early summer, you’ll see fields and fields and acres and acres of cowslip. Not a bad way to distract yourself from the realization that “THAT MAN IS DRIVING ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THE ROAD!”

Jun 15

Andiamo al cinema

(Extra material from our trip to London.)

I found these three posters in an Italian restaurant in London. I took a few quick snapshots because, I figured, they’d one day be worth sharing. My apologies for the reflections. There was a stairwell and bad lighting and actual food to eat.

It isn’t the most influential spaghetti western, but For a Few Dollars More is a direct descendent. And this is a ridiculously good poster and, no matter the language, you probably know exactly what film this is for:

Released in 1965, the film became the highest-grossing film in the history of Italian cinema. It came to the U.S. a few months later and made millions more.

The Deerhunter, and so now you know that the poster acquirer — shut up, that is too a real profession — for this restaurant has taste:

Ferruccio Amendola did the Italian dubs for Robert De Niro’s Mike Vronsky. He did dubs for more than 30 years, usually carrying big, domineering characters.

Sorry for the angle here, but The Hustler poster was hanging too high:

Totally worth it.

Play this while you read below:

Happily, the Italian dubs for Fast Eddy in both The Hustler and The Color of Money were done by Giuseppe Rinaldi. That’s no small thing. He’s considered the greatest voice actor in Italian history. He dubbed more than 200 foreign actors in about 500 films. Hudson, Sellers, Sinatra, Lancaster, Douglas, Peck, Martin, Dean, Poitier. Were you a leading man in the second half of the 20th century? Chances are that, in Italy, you sounded like Rinaldi. He worked for almost 40 years, until 1997, and passed away a decade later.

Jackie Gleason’s Minnesota Fats was played by Carlo Romano, who was an incredibly accomplished voice actor as well. He appeared in 86 films and did voicework for a few hundred more foreign actors. I can’t find him in that role on YouTube, but there are examples of Romano’s other work. He was no Gleason.

May 15

Travel day

Today we left London.

We Ubered to the train station, the driver listening to the Queen address Parliament. I’d watched some of the procession go into Westminster before we left.

On the train, there was a reminder to not forget your hat:

But if you only thought about it in the train’s lavatory, you were out of luck.

We got to Belgium without problem. The biggest difficulty was in the elevator. A friend picked us up at the train station and drove us to her home. This evening we’re relaxing. Tomorrow we start to explore Brussels.