Miscellanea

  • John Tolkien started to write the Silmarillion one hundred (one HUNDRED!) years ago and continued to work on it until he died, 41 years ago. Forty years later, an Illustration and Graphic Design student worked all by himself, for about one year, to produce a wonderful deluxe, hand-illuminated edition of the Silmarillion. But he can’t publish it. Because other people, who are NOT those who wrote those texts, haven’t given permission (synthesis from the interview):
  • (the italian version has many more links) If they can make you ask the wrong questions, the answers don’t matter. The new Ponte della Scafa (Scafa Bridge) over which Via della Scafa (Scafa Road) crosses the Tiber River is, I think, one of these cases. The Fiumicino area, from Google Maps. This bridge should replace the current, much smaller one (#1 in the picture from Google Maps).
  • The first entry for 2012 of my copyright madness gallery may be just behind (or below…) you in this very moment, in your own living room.Charles-Edouard Jeanneret, known as “Le Corbusier”, his cousin Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand are the creators of a number of items among the “cult objects” of the 20th century, including an Armchair, an “easy-chair” and a Chaise-longue Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand died respectively 46, 44 and 12 years ago.
  • Since this hasn’t probably got outside of Italy all the attention it deserves, here’s the story: ten days ago Unione Nazionale Consumatori (UNC) that is one of the biggest consumers associations of Italy, announced that YouTube has shutdown their official channel on YouTube.com (unioneconsumatori) for copyright violation. As you can see from the snapshot here, as of July 2, 2011, 1520 GMT, that account is still blocked. From what UNC says, the only “violation” is that they had put on YouTube (among many completely original videos) short excerpts of… interviews to UNC representatives aired from the Mediaset and R.
  • This happened in February 2011 but I only discovered it this week, when other Italian media resurrected the story, and it’s too good, or too serious, not to give it the greatest possible exposure. The background story is a real tragedy. Here’s an approximate, one paragraph summary: on Jan. 30th, 2011, Matthias Schepp left his home in Switzerland with his 6-year-old twins Alessia and Livia. After passing through Marseille and Corsica he arrived to Cerignola, Southern Italy, where he committed suicide by jumping (alone) under a train on February 3rd.
  • Albert Uderzo, the artist that together with Renè Goscinny created Asterix in 1959, is an 84 year old gentleman who (so the story goes) recently bought a real military fighter plane and a Pharaoh-like mansion, following the advice from his “plumber” (heck, who’s this guy, SuperMario?). Due to these and similar facts, Asterix’s sister, that is Uderzo’s daughter Sylvie, went to court to have her father declared mentally incompetent and to accuse the plumber to abuse of his influence on Uderzo.