I was never a huge circus guy as a kid, probably because I wasn’t a very good athlete – although the acrobats did impress me. Of course, being feet from large wild animals was thrilling! (except for the smell!) And being a ‘semi-professional’ magician (starting in the Fourth Grade) I was drawn to performers like clowns – even considering crossing the makeup line and becoming a clown magician myself! I’d read of Harry Houdini, and how he got his start in traveling carnivals performing feats of strength and ‘oddities’, like being able to pick up needles with his eyelashes while hanging inverted! (How one does this for an audience – who knows?)
But what really got my attention were the oddities, the Sideshow. The beginnings of the traveling circus. People and animals with disabilities or birth defects – Siamese twins, women with beards, two headed snakes – that sort of thing. Obviously, middle-America in the early 1800’s needed some kind of diversion, right?
And this is precisely why the circuses are ending. If one wants to see an elephant, there are thousands on You Tube. The same for magic, people with birth defects and feats of strength. No longer must one wait in line for tickets, endure the crowds, animal smells and over-priced popcorn to see such things. The circus can come to you! And there are TV, movies, shows – all stream-able to your TV, computer or cell phone.
Jeff Cooper sometimes spoke of seeing the elephant. In the olden days, a farm youth (as most were prior to 1920) had little or no exposure to life outside that which was on the farm. Birth, death, butchering, harvesting, hunting, planting – all hard physical labor. But little else.
When a boy ‘came of age’, his father would shove a few dollars in his pocket, point him to town, and tell him to go ‘see the elephant’. The circus was coming to town! The boy would dutifully go, see the elephant, the sideshow, perhaps have some liquor and engage in games of chance. If he had any money left, he might find a woman of ill-repute with whom to ‘spend some time’.
It was all about a rite-of-passage. Learning something about the outside world.
But, in today’s instantaneous electronically-connected world, there is no rite-of-passage. Boys (and girls) learn about sex from the Internet. Not exactly seeing the elephant.
No wonder instant gratification is the motto for the Millennials.
And we as a society are lesser for it.
Go see the elephant before the circus closes forever! Reportedly, they will stop using elephants by 2018. of course, the circus will end before that…
Find a woman?
I was never a big radiophile growing up. Probably because the focus was AM radio, and I preferred classical and jazz to rock-and-roll. (My older sister worshipped Elvis, however.)
I did remember my Dad telling me about his youth, having a crystal radio with which he could listen to AM channels in the evening, especially ‘on the skip’. He would then write the radio station and they would confirm what he heard by mailing him a QSL card! (Much as Amateur radio operators do today).
I even have a collector’s book (somewhere) of my Dad’s QSL cards, like from Pittsburgh and Chicago. (He lived in Providence, Rhode Island!)
So, in high school, instead of listening to the Monkees, the Beatles and Herman’s Hermits, I ‘borrowed’ my Dad’s AM tube radio. I connected the foot-long antenna to my window screen, shoved a robe under the bottom of the door (to prevent radio light leakage) and listened to late-night AM radio ‘on-the-skip’, like KSL (Salt Lake City) and WFAA (Dallas)! I remember even hearing some Chicago stations! (I was in the Phoenix area.)
This worked well for a long time – at least until an errant robe sleeve found it’s way into the hallway, and my radio privileges were taken away! 😦
I never wrote away for a QSL card, though.
Now, of course, one may turn one’s cellular telephone into a virtual AM/FM radio, with huge range.
It was a more primitive time.
As with dial telephone land lines, and pre-Internet, the youth will never understand.
Regular readers know I love movies and TV. What you may not know is, I rarely go ‘out’ to the movies.
Part of the reason is the technological shift in how we can view movies. I get them directly on my satellite dish, or through services like NETFLIX™. I even own a ‘few’ on DVD! (I know – OLD technology!) 😛
There are more than enough from which to choose.
And there’s this (from FB, in part – not me!):
Went to the H****** Metrocenter 12 …at the 01:30pm “Jupiter Ascending”…Me and 2 others of my party had to walk out!!!
Some trashy family with 3-4 kids sat right next to us and talked and talked ..and talked…and also they let their kid run up and down in front of us!
Then to top if off….the father had the nerve to pick up one of our parties drinks and hand it to his kid to drink out of ….then said sorry and handed it back “AFTER” his kid (& himself took turns slurping it down!).
I had to had have a friend get a manager…2 (Two) times….then finally got our money back and walked out!!
BAD!!!! I wont be back to the H****** Metrocenter 12…sad missed a film that I had been wanting to see for weeks!
Metrocenter used to be a family-friendly huge, upscale mall, wherein many weekends were spent window and actual shopping. With my then wife and young daughter. Now, with most of the brick-and-mortar department stores closed, it’s become a hang out for misguided yutes.
I remember even in pre-VHS days, attending a different theater and encountering rude people. As the film began, three yutes (misguided teens) began talking loudly to each other and the screen. Against my better judgment, I approached them and strongly suggested I paid good money to hear the movie, and not to hear them sh*** and j***. (Using a 40’s vernacular with which I’m certain they lacked familiarity).
They quieted down, and I spent most of the movie checking my six for some variety of retaliation. Thankfully, none came.
While I sometimes miss the big screens and speakers (remember CINERAMA™ and Dolby™?), it is nice knowing I can pause the film for bathroom and/or beverage, and even watch in my skivvies.
Today’s award goes to a bunch of hysterical, pants-wetting, sissified social justice warriors at Edgewood College in Wisconsin.
The post-it-note says “Suck it up, pussies!” Whoever wrote it also drew a winking, tongue-out smiley face…
. . .
Students had been invited to express their feelings about the election by writing them on post-it-notes and placing them on a designated table. The post-it-note in question appeared in the window of the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion instead, according to Campus Reform.
College Vice President Tony Chambers sent a letter to campus condemning this “act of cowardly hatred” and “intimidation.” He wrote:
A group of cross-functional college staff representing campus security, student conduct, human resources, Title IX enforcement, and diversity and inclusion measures convened Tuesday morning to discuss how to address the hateful message. This group determined that the message constituted a Hate Crime…
College officials informed the Madison police, and now the cops are investigating. They are investigating a post-it-note. With a non-threatening message and a smiley face on it. After inviting students to express their feelings via post-it-note.
That’s hate for you, I guess.
There’s more at the link.
Ye Gods and little fishes . . . hysterical over-reaction, anyone? I wonder what they’d do with a real hate note?
“the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion”
I think that says it all. Someone’s college money is going to pay for said office.
I’m not a believer in ‘hate speech’. There’s speech. It may be colorful, laudatory, or vile. But so-called Freedom of Speech supports it. It’s protected.
Unless it’s an actual threat of criminal violence, libel, slander, or child porn – it’s protected.
Waa! He called us a name and drew an inoffensive cartoon is protected.
GROW UP! You’re in college now.
In Greek mythology Sisyphus (;Greek: Σίσυφος, Sísuphos) was the king of Ephyra (now known as Corinth). He was punished for his self-aggrandizing craftiness and deceitfulness by being forced to roll an immense boulder up a hill, only to watch it come back to hit him, repeating this action for eternity. Through the classical influence on modern culture, tasks that are both laborious and futile are therefore described as Sisyphean (). (Wikipedia)
I’m on Facebook less (under my real name) since I’ve been producing a daily blog. Not to mention, the idiocy encountered on FB (especially in the realm of politics) is astounding.
STILL, I do sometimes visit there, and less often participate in political commentary. Because, sadly, there are some folks schooled in courtesy and debate, but many are not.
One of my FB friends is a guy I’ve known since grade school. We also went to the same junior high and graduated in the same class in high school. And attended the same Sunday school.
He claims to be an NRA member and a hunter, but sometimes repeats the time-worn arguments used by the anti-gun-rights community about controls over semiautomatic firearms and magazine capacity.
Not understanding the whole nose-under-the-tent thing, or, for that matter, The Second Amendment.
Regardless, he has a right to his opinion, and to post the same on Facebook.
I mostly just read others postings, occasionally adding my two cents worth. Or just clicking ‘like’.
Unless I am directly attacked!
So this guy mentioned me by name and strongly suggested I knew nothing about the issue, law or history, and should understand HIS interpretation of The Second Amendment! (the whole militia meme).
I took a deep breath (to slow my roll) and responded politely that he read The Federalist Papers and Madison and Tench Coxe to obtain a better perspective! I also recommended reading about how the first efforts on gun control were to stop freed slaves from firearms ownership (in 1809) and continued to the Sullivan Law in NYC (1911) to prevent undesirables (read immigrants) from having guns.
Then, I took another breath.
No response was posted.
BUT, in about a week, I saw another friend’s pro-gun Facebook posting generating a response from this same guy. THE SAME RESPONSE, ALMOST VERBATIM!
Obviously, he had not taken my suggestion to do further research.
I will continue to ‘like’ his comments regarding his new retirement home in Prescott, or his new prosthesis (he is an amputee), but I won’t bother responding any more to his screeds on restricting all our rights.
‘Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.’ – George Carlin
(as posted by Wirecutter
Hofstra University has posted a “trigger warning” sign to warn students about the potentially disturbing content that may be discussed during Monday night’s presidential debate.
According to CBS New York reporter Tony Aiello, a sign inside of the student center at Hofstra reads, “Trigger warning: The event conducted just beyond this sign may contain triggering and/or sensitive material. Sexual violence, sexual assault, and abuse are some topics mentioned within this event. If you feel triggered, please know there are resources to help you.”
Back when I was in college (covered wagons, etc.) there were those doing their duty. Either by questioning the authority of the government to facilitate wars, or by going to fight them! People on both sides of the issue were VERY vocal and emotional.
Yet rarely did either side feel ‘triggered’ and in need of a ‘safe space’ or ‘counseling’ based on someone’s speech alone!
Have our youth become so overly sensitive that this is thought necessary? By the nature of societal evolution?
Or, has this been the plan all along?
Peter (Bayou Renaissance Man) provided us with a well-thought-out tome regarding the recent (and ongoing) unpleasantness, and what happens if you happen to encounter such activity while driving.
The short version – DON’T BE THERE, KEEP MOVING!
Reading about these recent events took me back to my youth. No, I wasn’t protesting anything. I was simply trying to drive home.
(an aside – This was before I was an armed individual)
I had spent a pleasant evening with David Mitchell (another Dave-HA!) and was returning across the Tempe bridge when I came upon perhaps 200 people marching (well, walking together) across the bridge.
Against the flow of traffic, and my vehicle!
Not only did I not know WHY they were taking this action. I DIDN’T CARE! I simply wanted to return home to get ready for work (I was working graveyard shift at the time.)
But, here they were. All these folks. Impeding my progress – as well as the other vehicles headed in my direction. As this was a small college town, I even recognized some of the protestors (leftists, the usual suspects!)
Were they violent? (My car doors were locked, of course, as is my custom) My windows were up, also.
I waded into the crowd in my car, and kept moving. Slowly.
They banged with open palms on my windows and doors. And I kept moving. Later, I remembered my radio antenna. It remained unmolested.
Upon my return home, I determined the reason for the ‘march’ was a protest against Nixon’s invasion of Cambodia (at the height of the Vietnam War). While I may or may not have agreed with the protestors, I still had a job to go to.
I changed into my security guard uniform and went to work.
I think I was lucky. And was glad I kept moving.
Much has been written in these pages and on the Internet regarding George Soros, who unabashedly seems most interested in destroying Western Civilization.
The fact that so many of his fellow travelers and sycophants happily climb on board the train of destruction unnerves me. especially as so many of them were educated in The United States!
From Brock Townsend
George Soros should scare the hell out of anybody with a lick of sense.
Born a Hungarian Jew, his first job was working for the Nazis in World War II, helping to confiscate the property of Jews who were being rounded up, a job he not only never expressed any regret for, but that he described as one of the finest times of his life.
He has described himself, and the power he has as a billionaire, as being like a mad god.
“Next to my fantasies about being God, I also have very strong fantasies of being mad,” Soros said in an interview on British television.
And he certainly has considerable power to back up his fantasies, including the power to make the video clip of his famous 60 Minutes interview, or leaked documents from his Open Society Foundations, virtually disappear from the Internet.
Among the documents that were downloaded by various news outlets before they vanished, there are numerous eye-openers that clarify exactly how deep Soros’ various schemes go, and paint a picture of a man who can manipulate markets, order around governments and arrange coups wherever he likes.
Soros comes about as close to a comic book supervillain as you can get in real life. Honestly, he could give Lex Luthor or Doctor Doom a run for their money.
Among the revelations found so far in the Soros documents:
More @ Constitution
The fact that so many ‘young people’ (and their elders) have their minds manipulated by this clown, whilst their thoughts are buried in comic books and comicons, and superhero movies – and they are well into their 20’s! greatly concerns me.
Of course, that was probably part of the plan all along…
Don’t let old people vote:
GQ Magazine went all out
, producing: “WE SHOULD BAN OLD PEOPLE FROM VOTING”. Writing about “them” as if the older generations are some foreign species, the reasons given by the author included:
“The EU referendum result will have less effect on older people”; “Over 65s read the Daily Mail”; “There was no ‘golden age’ of Britain”; and “We take pensioners’ driving licences away… why not their right to vote?”
It’s time for the Government to dissolve the People and elect a new one …
When did a men’s ‘fashion’ magazine begin taking it upon itself to dictate public policy ideas? And, why should I care?
Gol’ darn young whippersnappers!
Obviously, useful idiots of Lenin will suffer more, if they cannot get more freebies from government. And, as they will live longer (in their nice, fashionable clothes) it only stands to ‘reason’ that they want the old folks disenfranchised…
Didn’t they ever see Logan’s Run? Don’t they realize one day they will get old?
from Brock Townsend:
Given its track record, one wonders why socialism is gaining in popularity in the U.S. and what appeal it has to a generation that, apparently, knows little about it.
A recent survey from Harvard University has found that 51 percent of young people between the ages of 18 and 29 do not support capitalism. Just 42 percent support the economic system that has allowed even the poorest American to live better and to have more opportunity for advancement than most of the rest of the world. Thirty-three percent of those surveyed support socialism.
Why does socialism receive such strong support among the young? I think it’s partly due to what is being taught in too many public schools and universities and it is partly due to ignorance and human nature, which would rather get a check than earn one.
Three quotes about socialism sum up both its false promise and its danger.
Back-in-the-day, when I was going to college, I paid all my own tuition, bought my own books, and worked full-time. At minimum wage or slightly more than minimum wage jobs. No student loans for me!
This is not to say I wouldn’t have considered a loan – I didn’t think I’d qualify and didn’t know I’d a choice!
What changed, wherein young people cannot work and afford college on their own?
(I suspect the government is involved!)
(In the interest of full disclosure, I barely make it on SSDI today, and sometimes borrow (or am gifted) money to pay my auto insurance, or to make groceries. This is not a bleg, but just a statement-of-fact. What changed, when I could once afford to pay my own way, and now cannot? I suspect the government is involved.)