Saturday, September 18, 2004

Thunderbolts and Lightning Very, Very Frightening....

Well, before more thunderstorms come through the area courtesy of the remnants of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Javier causing me to shut off my 'puter for safety reasons, I figured I'd grab the chance and throw a couple of things up...

- Happy birthday to Everlasting CharlieStalker and a slightly belated one to Tucson's Own Homer

- Still need to get tickets for John Waters.

- UltraSparkalicious posted a nifty passage by Lance Arthur whose therapist gsve an interesting reason for why a person might blog:

“Everyone needs to ask the universe a few questions now and again. Some people call that prayer, some people call that meditation, there are different words and different methods but the goal is the same. We come to places we can’t figure out on our own, and even our friends and family can’t really help. So we ask the universe — the larger power, God, what have you. And I think your Web page, that act, that place, that’s your larger power. You launch the questions out there and sometimes you get a response, sometimes not. It’s the act that’s important. You’ve just chosen a unique and very public God to question.”

Definitely an interesting perspective. Dunno if this applies to me in whole or in part but I understand it.

- Got this via e-mail. Dunno how much of it is factual but it's an interesting read on a trivial level.

LIFE IN THE 1500's

The next time you are washing your hands and complain because the water
temperature isn't just how you like it, think about how things used to be.
Here are some facts about the 1500s:

These are interesting... Most people got married in June because they took
their yearly bath in May, and s! till smelled pretty good by June. However,
some times they started to smell earlier, so brides carried a bouquet of
flowers to hide the body odor. Hence the custom today of carrying a
bouquet when getting married.

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house
had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and
men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By
then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence
the saying, "Don't throw the baby out with the bath water."

Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw-piled high, with no wood underneath.
It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other
small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof. When it rained it became
slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence
the sayin! g "It's raining cats and dogs."

There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house. This posed a
real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up
your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the
top afforded some protection. That's how canopy beds came into existence.

The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence
the saying "dirt poor." The wealthy had slate floors that would get
slippery in the winter when wet , so they spread thresh (straw) on floor
to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they adding more thresh
until when you opened the door it would all start slipping outside. A
piece of wood was placed in the entranceway. Hence the saying a "thresh
hold." (Getting quite an education, aren't you?)

In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big! kettle that
always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to
the pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would
eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold
overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes stew had food in it
that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, "Peas porridge
hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old."

Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When
visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off. It was a
sign of wealth that a man could "bring home the bacon." They would cut off
a little to share with guests and would all sit around and "chew the fat."

Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content
caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing l! ead poisoning
death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years
or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the
loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or "upper crust."

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would
sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking
along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They
were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family
would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake
up. Hence the custom of holding a "wake."

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places
to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a
"bone-house" and reus! e the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of
25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they
realized they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on
the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the
ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the
graveyard all night (the "graveyard shift") to listen for the bell; thus,
someone could be "saved by the bell" or was considered a "dead ringer."

- Okay, off to watch Serial Mom for the first time in ages.