Letters to the Sydney Morning Herald during the planning of the Sydney Opera House in 1957 were not complimentary: "Faced with the nightmare illustrated in your columns, some 25th century Bluebeard's lair, its ominous vanes pointed skywards apparently only for the purpose of discharging guided missiles or some latter-day nuclear Evil Eye, words fail." Another was equally damning: "This whale of a monument to the clever ugliness of 'modern' art will be a constant eyesore. Its over-finished roof with many curved surfaces all covered with white tiles will be a glaring monstrosity. Could not the suffering which it will cause be more equitably distributed by constructing the fins in such a way that they will act as giant megaphones and thus keep residents on the north supplied with the dying screams of melodramatic sopranos?" But after a fair few decades, it's grown on people. In 2003 Danish architect Jorn Utzon received the Pritzker Architecture Prize, architecture's highest honour. The citation read, "There is no doubt that the Sydney Opera House is his masterpiece. It is one of the great iconic buildings of the 20th century, an image of great beauty that has become known throughout the world — a symbol for not only a city, but a whole country and continent." (Via Futility Closet)
All ages picnic facilities
Old School Teachers
1. A reader writes: "Many years ago my brother related to me what he considered was a classic "retort". The scene is a university lecture hall, crowded with students attending a philosophy course. The Professor was asked if would name the author of a quote he had used. "I Kant" replied the prof..."Why the hell not, sir?" was the instant reply."
2. At the University of Edinburgh in the 1970s, Simon Lord's art history lectures were conducted via slides in a small, darkened room. "On one occasion, it was not the students but the professor giving the lecture who fell asleep, while still talking. After some whispered debate among the students, we all tiptoed out quietly. What he thought when he woke up, we never knew – it was never mentioned."
3. Tim Stevenson was a teacher way back, teaching accounting. It is one of those subjects where, if you don't apply yourself, you can get zero for an exam. This happened to one of my students. I put a zero on top of their test. When I handed the exam out, after marking, the student, seeing a zero at the top of the page, said to me "Sir, you didn't put a mark in the circle!" I replied, "I didn't put a circle around your mark!"