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Peter Pan (03/01)

I have never even considered the possibility that the ‘Pan” in Peter Pan is based on Pan the Greek god of nature.

Pan is a figure who recurs through European culture, especialy after the Romantics. But he became a natural and pervasive Edwardian god: a playful wild outdorr hero that never ages, combining in one image the delights of rural and childhood retreat.

Mabel Lucie Attwell's illustration for "Peter Pan & Wendy" (1911)

Mabel Lucie Attwell's illustration for "Peter Pan & Wendy" (1911)

Peter Pan, whose horned cap, rural attire and pan pipes are the only remnants of his descent from the Greek centaur, is the most eccentric  and the most human of all these creatures. He  could not have come about with out the cultural obsession with Pan, but he belongs as much to the popular archetype of the immortal young man which was developing in the 1880s when Barrie was forming literary ambitions.

From  Inventing Wonderland by Jackie Wullschlager

Maybe we should reconsider or consider some of our own cultural obsessions.

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Rube Goldberg Contraption (02/21)

(noun) a comically involved, complicated invention, laboriously contrived to perform a simple operation.

(noun) a comically involved, complicated invention, laboriously contrived to perform a simple operation.

I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite scenes in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure is when he gets breakfast ready by turning on a fan and lighting a candle (thus beginning his Rube Goldberg machine). As a kid, I always thought that machines of that nature were a movie trick. I never knew that there was a name for them and that they can actually be made.

But who was Rube Goldberg?

Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) was a Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, sculptor, and author.

Best known for his INVENTIONS, Rube’s early years as an engineer informed his most acclaimed works. A Rube Goldberg contraption – an elaborate set of arms, wheels, gears, handles, cups, and rods, put in motion by balls, canary cages, pails, boots, bathtubs, paddles, and live animals – takes a simple task and makes it extraordinarily complicated. He had solutions for How To Get The Cotton Out Of An Aspirin Bottle, imagined a Self-Operating Napkin, and created a Simple Alarm Clock – to name just a few of his hilariously depicted drawings.

from the official Rube Goldberg website

See the top 10 movies with Rube Goldberg Machines

and a cool little Honda commericial:

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