Posted tagged ‘history’

Really? Really.

June 8, 2021

coronaFor years, I started the day reading the online news.  Yes, I was interested in what was going on in the world.  But the fun part was looking for blog-post material, things that my inner curmudgeon could sink his literary teeth into.   People found his satirical takes on the news funny and so did I.   Ah, but that was before The Donald and The Coronavirus.  There is still plenty of news to write about but I find it scary.   The headline that caught our eye this morning was Joints for Jab?  Washington OKs free pot as vaccine incentive.   Yes, folks, licensed marijuana stores in the State of Washington are also giving COVID-19 shots, and yes folks, the state has authorized them to give away one free joint for using their service. (more…)

Heroic, Historic, Flawed

July 24, 2020

You have probably heard of John Muir.   According to Wikipedia, His letters, essays, and books describing his adventures in nature, especially in the Sierra Nevada, have been read by millions. His activism helped to preserve the Yosemite Valley and Sequoia National Park, and his example has served as an inspiration for the preservation of many other wilderness areas. The Sierra Club, which he co-founded, is a prominent American conservation organization. In his later life, Muir devoted most of his time to the preservation of the Western forests. As part of the campaign to make Yosemite a national park, Muir published two landmark articles on wilderness preservation in The Century Magazine, “The Treasures of the Yosemite” and “Features of the Proposed Yosemite National Park”; this helped support the push for U.S. Congress to pass a bill in 1890 establishing Yosemite National Park.[6] The spiritual quality and enthusiasm toward nature expressed in his writings has inspired readers, including presidents and congressmen, to take action to help preserve large nature areas. (more…)

Pompeii and Sorrento

October 1, 2014

image When we awoke on Tuesday morning, the Norwegian Epic had already docked in Naples, known in Italy as Napoli.  Poor Napoli … cruise ships arrive daily into her port and bypass her for her smaller and prettier sisters, Capri, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast and for the spectacular remains of Pompeii.  We were no exception. We chose and excursion called The Flavours of Sorrento and Pompeii.   We had a quick breakfast then boarded bus number 19 with our guide Cinzia and headed toward Pompeii, about an hour away.  Even a history-hating student like I was fascinated by the story of the thriving city of Pompeii being buried under 20 feet of volcanic dust during an eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.   The remains of the city are high on a hill above the parking area for the buses and required a walk up the steeply inclined stone road leading to the entrrance.  Cinzia, image probably noting the age of our group of cruisers, kept telling us, Piano, piano (slowly, slowly).  You are on vacation.  The climb, of course, was worth it … the remarkably preserved buildings, streets and artifacts give incredible insight into community that was buried under the ashes and the plaster casts of victims, including a pregnnt woman and a dog tell of the tragedy.   We saw houses, bakeries, wine shops and even the remains of a brothel. (more…)

A History Lesson

October 8, 2013

time machineIf you had a souped-up DeLorean with a flux capacitor and the 1.21 gigawatts of power necessary to travel back to East Haven, CT in 1965 … and for some reason found your way into Mrs. Esposito’s American History class, you’d find approximately 21 smiling students.  Mrs. Esposito was a very popular teacher … everybody liked her.  Well, almost everybody.  I hated history and didn’t care much for Mrs. Esposito.  The feeling was mutual.  Once high school was over, I never took another history course, or for that matter, read another history book unless it was novelized history like Laura Hildebrand’s Unbroken.  So, upon your return to 2013, you’d certainly be surprised to find me reading Stephen E. Ambrose’s The Wild Blue, a straight up history of the pilots who flew the B-24 Liberator Bombers over GermanyTST during World War II.   As it turns, I had mentioned my father’s service in Italy during the war a ground crew supervisor for B-24s to my friend Ralph, a genuine history buff … and the next time I saw him, he handed me the book.  I took it wondering if I’d ever get around to reading it.  And on this Top Sites Tuesday #224, I’m here to tell you that I’m glad I did. (more…)

Historically Speaking

May 19, 2012

This week, Muri and I visited the Heard Museum in Phoenix.  The Heard is a world famous museum of American Indian art and history, a subject that neither Muri or I have found particularly interesting.  The truth is, we went because John and Carolyn, our next door neighbors here in Arizona, said it was a nice museum … with an excellent restaurant for lunch.   We planned our visit to arrive at lunch time, and the restaurant was indeed excellent, serving Southwestern entrees with a touch of Native American ingredients.  We had guacamole with two salsas (a fire-roasted tomato and a roasted pineapple) then shared a wrap with oven roasted chicken, red pepper, cucumbers, tomatoes, feta cheese, romaine, pepitas, and tzatziki sauce.  Delicious.  We then took a guided tour of the museum.  Our docent was a young Native American woman studying biological anthropology at the University of Arizona and she brought to life the pottery and jewelery and paintings lining the walls by relating them to the history of Arizona’s indigenous people. (more…)