Simanaitis Says

On cars, old, new and future; science & technology; vintage airplanes, computer flight simulation of them; Sherlockiana; our English language; travel; and other stuff

JANUS 2022/2023 PART 1

THIS TIME EACH YEAR, I EXPERIENCE nostalgia mixed with hope. Here, in Parts 1 and 2 today and tomorrow, are tidbits gleaned from 2022 SimanaitisSays together with aspirational expectations for 2023. They’re in no particular order, either of chronology or importance.

Janus is the Roman god of beginnings, endings, and transitions. This statue is in the Vatican Museums. 

Etymology for a New Year. Wikipedia says, “The name of the god Iānus, meaning in Latin ‘arched passage, doorway’, stems from Proto-Italic *iānu (‘door’), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *iehnu (‘passage’). It is cognate with Sanskrit yāti (‘to go, travel’), Lithuanian jóti (‘to go, ride’), Irish áth (‘ford‘) or Serbo-Croatian jàhati (‘to ride’).”

Gee. I knew that Lithuanian is the modern language closest to Sanskrit; I wonder if similarity is also true of Irish or Serbo-Croatian? (By the way, this “trivium-following-lead” is a hint on how SimanaitisSays is generated.) 

My New Eyes. It’s almost exactly a year ago that I experienced the wonders of cataract surgery. Dr. Rowen promised she’d work for the best distance vision in both eyes, and she sure delivered. 

Not long after surgery, I tested at 20/15. That is, to match my acuity at 20 ft, a person with average eyesight would have to be 5 ft closer. 

I had given up on this paperback until my new eyes arrived. 

I’m due for renewal of my driver’s license in October 2023. When the DVI says “Cover one eye and read line 4,” I’d be tempted to read lines 5 and 6 below it just for fun. 

More Legitimate Political Discourse?? I was agog in early February 2022 when batshit crazy Republicans called the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol “legitimate political discourse.”

Since then, we’ve had Marjorie Taylor Greene telling a crowd, “… if Steve Bannon and I had organized that, we would have won. Not to mention, it would’ve been armed.” 

Later she said she was only joking. Maybe like the time she said Rothschild Jews were space-laser-igniting California wildfires to make room for its high-speed rail project. Or holding to the QAnon conspiracy that Donald Trump is secretly fighting a worldwide child-sex-slavery ring.

What with the Republicans having the House majority, there’s talk that Greene “will be the real Speaker behind the scenes even if Kevin McCarthy gets the job.”

Gad. Some Speaker. 

An Influential Rhythm. I’ve noticed how well Bossa Nova has assimilated itself into our music. In fact, to my ear, no genre other than jazz has so deftly joined the Great American Songbook. 

Frank Sinatra and Antônio Carlos Jobim. Image from npr.org

It was in researching this piece that I learned about Brazilian President Juscelino Kubitschek and how “the subsequent economic boom helped him infect the entire country with his optimism.” 

Biden’s presidency has yet to achieve that degree of optimism, but his statesmanship has certainly exceeded that of the loser prompting a once-loyal New York Post to put “Florida Man Makes Announcement” at the bottom of its front page.

A good one.

Janus will continue this tomorrow in Part 2. ds 

© Dennis Simanaitis, SimanaitisSays.com, 2022

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