Tag Archives: Books

Horace Walpole

Longreads

Carrie Frye | Longreads | December 2014 | 16 minutes (4,064 words)

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As a child, Horace Walpole frequently heard it said of himself that surely he would die soon. Born in England in 1717, the last of his mother’s six children, he was fragile and prone to illness from birth. Two siblings before him had died in infancy, and so in the family order it went: three older children, loud, healthy and opinionated; two grave markers; and then young Horace toddling up behind—half child, half potential grave marker.

Naturally, his mother, Catherine, spoiled him. His father, Sir Robert Walpole, was the King’s prime minister. This often kept him away from home, as did a long-time mistress who acted, more than his wife did, as his hostess and companion. For her part Catherine had her own dalliances. It was that sort of marriage. The Walpoles…

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Minas Tirith Made From 420,000 Matchsticks

minas-tirith-made-from-matchsticks-by-pat-acton-matchstick-marvels-(7)

TwistedSifter

Minas Tirith (aka the White City and City of the Kings) is the capital of Gondor, a fictional city and castle from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth.

Completed in 2010 after three years of work, artist Pat Acton recreated the famed city using 420,000 meticulously placed matchsticks and a lot of glue. He used an additional 24,000 small wooden blocks to construct Mount Mindoulluin, which supports the colossal matchstick structure.

To create his artworks, Acton purchases matchsticks (without the sulfur tip) directly from match manufacturers. All of his models (that have not been purchased) can be viewed at the Matchstick Marvels Museum in Gladbrook, Iowa. The museum is open 7 days a week from 1-5 pm (April 1 – Nov. 30). Admission for adults is $5; kids aged 5-12 $3; and free for anyone younger.

You can see more of Acton’s amazing matchstick models on his website and Facebook page.

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Dog Days Classics: Norman Mailer’s The Executioner’s Song

gary gilmore

Tropics of Meta

I just wanted to say thanks to all who have supported me over the years: Reverend Campbell, for my spiritual guidance; Aaron, the father of Darrian, my son; and Maurie, my attorney. Thank you everybody. This is not a loss, this is a win. You know where I am going. I am going home to be with Jesus. Keep the faith. I love y’all. Thank you, Chaplain.

These were the last words uttered by Kimberly McCarthy, Texas inmate number 999287. She was born in May of 1961 and was thirty-six years old when she committed the crime that would eventually take her to death row. Although she proclaimed her innocence up to her execution, she was convicted of stabbing to death a seventy-year-old woman during a robbery in 1997. She had brown eyes and at the time of her execution measured five feet, three inches and weighed 188 pounds. She…

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