Aliens in This World

An ordinary Catholic and a science fiction and fantasy fan.

Saturday, June 05, 2004

The Transit of Genius

Here is the commemorative background I created for my Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century site. The art comes from the episode "The Musgrave Sword"; the quotes are the Sherlock Holmes stories "The Naval Treaty" and "The Adventure of the Second Stain".

picture of cemetery and brown falling leaf

I raise my glass to Ronald Wilson Reagan. Now he belongs to the ages.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Percy Grainger's at Terry Teachout's

I was extremely happy to read about Terry Teachout's amazing art buy: a Max Beerbohm caricature of Percy Grainger. Teachout mentions his piano and composition careers. I think of him as one of the great and influential English folk music collectors and distributors, as well as someone with distinctly odd (and chauvinist piggish) attitudes toward morris dancing. Although he didn't scan it in for us to view and envy, I can't think of anyone I'd rather have owning it. (I exclude myself on the grounds that nobody without a temperature-controlled place should own even what I already do -- although anyone after my Hannes Bok and Jack Gaughan sketches will have to pry them out of my happy possessive fingers.)

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

St. Philip Neri -- Patron Saint of Furries?!?

Anthropomorphic fen, rejoice! Thanks to Irish Elk and InfoRoma, we have the following historical example of furry costuming done by a saint:

He considered humility to be extremely important and required his followers to undergo humiliating experiences to develop this virtue. He once told a young man to walk through the city with a fox's tail attached to his rear; the young man refused and was in turn refused admission to Neri's congregation.

As we all know, it is extremely common to see people at science fiction conventions walking around with the simple costume of a fake fur tail attached to their pants. (Or multiple tails, in the case of one young anime fan playing a multi-tailed kitsune.) And yes, sometimes it's a bit embarrassing to wear costumes in public when it's not Halloween. So clearly, here we have another example of the saint ahead of his time.

Seriously, though, St. Philip Neri was a heck of a guy. Funnyman and mystic, friend and stern master -- a man who could work wonders because he had such awe of God and humility before Humanity. Furrydom could certainly do worse, especially in its current troubled and corrupt state, than to look to a saint of love, purity, humor, and joy.

Monday, May 31, 2004

Anime Song Translation: Detective Conan aka Case Closed

As I fully expected, I really love Meitantei Conan. Even with the annoying character name changes. As long as the mysteries remain intact, I am so there.

Anyway, I ended up not liking the Funimation translation of the show's opening song. It's not bad; it's probably stronger than mine in many ways; seems to miss the point. (Not that it really matters, as the song was only shown on Cartoon Network on the pilot episode. CN almost always cuts the opening credits. It's a time thing.) So I will present my translation below.

"Mune ga Dokidoki"
(Detective Conan 1st opening song)
Translation by Maureen S. O'Brien, 5/31/04

A hundred years have now gone by --
It's turn of the century --
And when I knew that I should cry,
I felt a laugh escape from me.
Now a century has gone;
The Moon is shining yonder.
Out to that wide flying world,
I must begin to wander.

Now, way back when I was a child,
I know I lacked all understanding.
But now that I am all grown up,
I only know a few things.

So I'm not all that great
And I'm not all that bad.
All I can really know here is
Just my heartbeat pounding.
I don't know all the answers,
I don't know all the truth.
All I can really trust here is
Just my heartbeat pounding,
Only the pounding of my heart.


So the lesson sure is cool,
But I still don't understand.
I can only know the dream;
I just can't hold back the plan.
Build the operation, wait,
While patiently I ponder --
Those few things the child knew,
Now draw us here to wander.

So on the borderline of space,
I keep on building and rebuilding.
And of the mysteries of space,
I understand a few things.