The Week In Death

J.D. Salinger — Yes I have read Catcher in the Rye, and…no, I didn’t particularly like it. But there is no questioning that the American literary landscape is poorer now that Salinger has passed away. Hopefully rumors of a huge catalog of unpublished works are true and that we’ll now see some of those works in print.

Jean SimmonsJean Simmons — Everyone has a favorite actress from the ‘golden era’ of American cinema. People like to talk about Liz Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, Vivien Leigh, Grace Kelly, or Ingrid Bergman. But for me, it was always Jean Simmons, a great beauty and a great, though perhaps not the greatest, actress of her generation. Ms. Simmons died last Friday at the age of 80.

SpiritThe Mars Spirit Rover — Anyone who’s read Ragebot! (or before that Blognonymous) knows that I’m a big fan of the Mars Rovers. Without exception, Spirit and Opportunity are the most successful vehicles of space exploration ever built. Designed to last only 3 months, these complex scientific platforms have been trundling across the martian surface, doing their thing, for over 6 YEARS! Well, early this week, the Spirit operations team at JPL announced that their attempts to get the rover ‘unstuck’ from a sand pit were unsuccessful, and that, henceforth, they would concentrate on keeping Spirit alive through the martian winter. It’s roving is over, but hopefully Spirit will live on as a stationary science lab.

5 thoughts on “The Week In Death”

  1. I’m surprised Gene hasn’t sued Jean for identity theft.

    Wonder how long it’ll be before humans land on Mars and find those rovers right before we begin screwing up another ball of rock.

  2. I think Catcher In The Rye loses it’s relevance once a person gets a few years under their belt, but it was pretty good when I was a younger man.

    I’ll always remember Jean Simmons as Mrs. Spartcus, a great Kubrick movie.

    I love ScFi and ScFact. Keep NASA’s funding to levels where they can continue and not just tick over.

  3. Randal… With any luck those rovers will still be doing their job when we arrive. Here’s to hoping…

    Holte… Certainly Spartacus was where I first saw Jean Simmons. As for NASA, I just wish they’d plow the funds from the so-called ‘return to the moon’ into JPL, and let the lab build more probes like the Rovers.

  4. Off at my local country community arts centre (pub) it was put to me: “You read, did you read Salinger?” Well yes, but I thought it was pretty ordinary. Now Kerouak… “Who?” The thing about Salinger is that his name and the book are known – vaguely. One of the bar supports said, “of course he was involved in killing Kennedy – that bloke had his book!” In fact it was the bloke who killed John Lennon was carrying the book. Another corner of the bar offered that he, JDS, was only a Pom after all. It turned out he was confusing another ‘seminal’ text and author, Lady Chatterley’s Lover – D. H. Lawrence. Not only JDS was reclusive so are many of our unread mind.

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