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A Chin To Die For, Plus Poetry

I’m retired, and have no complaints about my career. At least officially. But I always thought I would have been more successful if I was about 6 inches taller, or had a great chin like say, Cary Grant. I was pretty sure of this.

Last week I received an email from Robin, a Scottish friend, who has been a long time Burns fan; Burns Night and all that.

Since Scott and I made our trip to Orkney and stayed in the “Bothy” on the Pier at Stromness…I have got into some of the art and culture of Orkney. One aspect that might interest you is George Mackay Brown (the bard of Orkney). It’s a lot easier going than some of Burns and really captures the essence of the place.

So I went to George Mackay Brown’s website, and was gob-smacked. Take a look at George’s chin. Simply amazing, my new hero. And I’m not even into his poetry yet.

Georgy Mackay Brown 1921 - 1996

George Mackay Brown 1921 - 1996

Here are your links: GMB Website, Wikipedia. George Mackay Brown is considered to be one of the great Scottish poets of the 20th century, to say nothing of a face sporting the Gold Standard of Big Chins.

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6 thoughts on “A Chin To Die For, Plus Poetry

  1. Striving for chin? Da Vinci used a chin like that to practice “what not to draw.” AKA: What is *not* beauty. Classically, it’s referred to as grotesque. I don’t think it marks a good career characteristic:
    Sorry to insult the great poet, but he is a poet, Bob, not a model. 😉

    Posted by Heather | May 27, 2009, 7:25 pm
  2. Somehow this relates:

    “Chin-Chin! A Humorous Toast
    I18nGuy Home Page

    For many years, I managed a team of internationalization engineers. Teams of this type are often a mix of cultures. This one was no exception. We came to enjoy the many differences in perspective that existed in the group. Going out to eat together was also a great passion, and when there was an occasion for toasting, you would often hear us toast “Chin-chin!”.

    “Chin-chin” is an italian toast, (actually Cin-Cin) which I believe means the equivalent of “to your health”. One of our Japanese engineers had once told us a story about this. Apparently, a Japanese business man goes to a dinner event. During the course of the dinner, an Italian raises his glass and toasts “Chin-chin!” to the Japanese man. At first, the Japanese looks stunned. He looks at the Italian, and apparently detecting that the Italian meant no harm, he raises his glass and sips his drink sharing in the toast. He smiles broadly.

    Later in the evening, someone who noticed his facial expressions during the toast, goes to the Japanese man and asks him about his reaction. He smiles and explains:

    “I had not heard this particular toast before. In Japanese, the word ‘chin’ means penis. So when he said ‘chin-chin’ to me, I thought at first he was insulting me. Then I thought about it, and decided if this man wants to toast my penis, who am I to argue? So I accepted the toast gladly.”

    Once we heard that story, we rarely missed a chance to toast each other with “Chin-chin”. (Or at least most of the men did.)

    The words themselves must not be too offensive in Japan. For example, streetcars run from Tennoji and Ebisu-cho in Osaka to Hamadera in Sakai City. The name of this kind of streetcar is “Chin-chin Densha” or “Chin-den” for short. “Densha” means “train” in Japanese, and the sound of the bell which rings at the time of departure is considered to be “Chin-chin”.

    However, expect quite a few giggles if you refer to “The Three Little Pigs” in Japan, and cite:
    “Not by the hair of my chinny-chin-chin!”.

    Copyright © 2002-2009, Tex Texin. All rights reserved.”

    Posted by Sand Pounders Union | May 27, 2009, 9:11 pm
  3. Here’s a follow-up email from Robin: “You are right about the chin. I also think there is more than a passing resemblance to Bill G… You may … remember Bill came from the Shetlands, an even more northerly and windy group of islands than the Orkney’s. The look must come from constantly grinding your teeth in the face of a force 9 gale from a very early age. Note also the windswept hair.”

    Posted by Bob Gelber | May 28, 2009, 7:09 am


  1. Pingback: A Day Late, And A Dollar Sarko’d « Not A Mystery - September 3, 2009

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