Friday finds

A geological team looking for oil in the western desert of Egypt may have discovered the remains of some Mass grave50,000 Persian soldiers swallowed up by a sandstorm in the sixth century BCE. The “lost army,” mentioned by Herodotus in the fifth century BCE, has long been considered a myth, though that hasn’t prevented generations of adventurers from looking for evidence of the soldiers, sent by King Cambyses and (according to Herodotus) last seen at the oasis of Siwa. Maybe George Lucas should take note of this: Indiana Jones and the Lost Army could be a dynamite title for a movie. And, if memory serves, didn’t Robert E. Howard write a poem about Cambyses?        

Continuing in this mythological vein, Owen Sheers talks about White Ravens, his retelling of a story from the Welsh myth cycle The Mabinogion. The book sounds pretty good, but I still swear by Evangeline Walton’s retelling of the same story in The Children of Llyr

Get out your best gray flannel suit and work your way through “Books to Read Mad Men By,” listed by The Neglected Books Page in two installments here and here.  

Here’s the perfect stocking-stuffer for the Hayao Miyazaki fan in your family.

Robert Stone, author of Dog Soldiers, A Flag for Sunrise and Bay of Souls, is coming to Princeton University for a reading.  I am so there.

Everything’s turning up hobbits.

Bruce Lee or Jet Li? All I can tell you is that when I was a kid and The Green Hornet was on the tube, nobody ever pretended to be Britt Reid. Everybody wanted to be Kato. Pretending to use the Hornet’s Sting was a distant second.  

“This video is fantastic and highly educational. It teaches you how to whittle your own 19th Century dictionary, using only string, a turnip, and a clamp. But first you have to make your own Linotype machine.”

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