Tag Archives: HISTORY

A Tree Named Boab (That’s Australian for Bob)

Have you ever seen a photo of a baobab tree? I first saw them in a college textbook about South African History and they are

Classic baobab tree.

magnificent. They sort of look like a tree turned upside down with its roots in the air and its foliage buried in the ground. To see one makes it hard to forget one.

Last winter my wife and I watched a police series that was filmed in Australia and something resembling baobab trees were a regular part of outdoor shots. After a little research, I discovered that there is only

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What About Bernie?

When 78-year-old Bernie Sanders had his recent heart attack I wondered if it would ruin his chances for election. I recalled that in the 1950s Dwight Eisenhower suffered heart problems and he finished out two terms in office. I couldn’t remember if he had experienced his attack during his first or second term.

So, I did a little Googling and learned that the four-pack a day smoker suffered an attack while playing golf in September 1955. He was aged 64 and in June of 1956 announced he would run for a second term.

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Sergeant at Arms, Arrest That Man!

Unless you’re brain dead you know there is a huge battle going on between the House of Representatives and the White House. The House is gleaning information (evidence) in an attempt to impeach Donald J. Trump and Donald J. Trump is stonewalling in every way he can.

Traditionally the House could turn to federal prosecutors but since the AG is behaving as if he were Trump’s personal attorney there’s not much chance of resolution via that route.

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The Last Days of Great BBQ? Let Us Hope Not!

In the early 1980s, my sister in law’s parents began letting my family and me stay at their Atlantic Beach, NC cottage for a week each year. On our first trip, we discovered Wilber’s BBQ in Goldsboro, NC and to this day it has remained the standard by which we have come to measure pulled pork. Over the years none of us have ever driven along Highway 70 and not stopped at Wilber’s going and coming. Often we would stop just to bring home bottles of his famous vinegar-based sauce and several frozen pounds of his whole-hog hickory-smoked delight.

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Understanding High-Crimes & Misdemeanors

For at least the fourth time in our history, the US House of Representatives is investigating a sitting president for impeachable offenses. Besides the official investigation that Speaker Nancy Pelosi endorsed yesterday against Donald Trump, there was Andrew Johnson in 1868, Richard Nixon in 1973, and Bill Clint 1998. Nixon resigned before his case came to trial in the Senate while the Senate failed to find Johnson and Clinton guilty of the charges. 
With yesterday’s decision by Pelosi the question arises, what are impeachable charges? The US Constitution clearly states that the president, the vice president, and all civil officers, may be impeached. Stated impeachable offenses would include “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

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“Locked & Loaded” – Oh Shit, Not Another War!

George H.W. Bush, in 1990, took a coalition of nations into Kuwait and Iraq to protect one of our sources of oil from an invading Iraqui army. We went to war for oil, and many Americans didn’t think that was justified. The majority, however, saw our actions as protecting a friendly nation from a tyrant, Saddam Hussein.

Currently, Donald Trump is threatening war with Iran and seems to be claiming that Iran attacked our friend, Saudi Arabia. A clearer version of the truth is that both Iran and Saudi are aggressor nations and neither is a friend to America. Both nations are religious and economic rivals and both sponsor international terrorism. After all, it was Saudis who brought down the trade towers on 9/11 and it is the Saudis who are heavily responsible for the civil war that is raging in their neighboring country of Yemen.

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Gee Our Old LaSalle Ran Great…

People love to talk about how great things used to be and in many ways, I’m no different. Several conversations recently have me thinking about those good old days. So, I decided to make a list of what we used to pay for things. Feel free to add to it.

Prices in the 1950s:

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Red’s – It Is What It Is!

There was a time in the American South when juke joints were to be found at every dirt road crossing. Sometimes they were ramshackle houses or abandoned commercial buildings but often, they were small buildings assembled from whatever could be found. Rough cut boards, disassembled shipping crates, and rusting metal roofing were common.

Inside these places could be found fried catfish, smoked pork, cold beer, corn liquor and a couple of guys with cheap instruments pounding out the rhythms that we know today as the blues. If there wasn’t live music there’d be a jukebox playing records and thus the name, juke joints.

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Biscuits & Gravy, a History

I am a member of a Facebook Page aimed at people who love food and love to cook. One of the common postings is about having had biscuits and gravy for breakfast, especially biscuits and sausage gravy.

It’s a popular meal and almost everyone has something to say about how they prepare it and/or how they consume it. I prefer mine, for example, as a single split buttermilk biscuit with just a minimal amount of gravy containing a mild sausage. On top, I like a sunny side up farm egg with salt and pepper.

One member wrote about making a tomato gravy and serving it on toast. I tried making it and served mine on a biscuit. If I were to do it again I’d fry up a couple of strips of crisp bacon to crumble on top of the gravy.

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Mound City Group – National Historical Park

Back in the 1970s, I took my junior high school class to Mound City Group in Chillicothe. Even though I drive past the main site several times a year I haven’t stopped until just a few days ago. I had thrown my back out so I didn’t venture beyond the visitor center area but I got enough pictures and a short video to give one some idea of what is to be found there.

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A Few Words About Protected Words!

On Friday, July 19, 2019, Donald J. Trump said:

“You can’t speak about our country the way those four congressmen – they said, ‘garbage.’ They say things about Israel that’s so bad I’m not even going to repeat them right now.

“They can’t get away with that act.

Essentially Trump is claiming that Americans don’t have the right to say things that he disagrees with or doesn’t like. That somehow the First Amendment of free speech doesn’t apply to those who talk of things that challenge his hegemony of power.

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Columbine to Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton

I find this an interesting graphical illustration of mass shootings in America since Columbine in 1999. I’m not sure what defines a mass shooting but one definition I read says it is any that involved the death of four or more people.

There are several things illustrated by this graphic, the most blatant being the frequency of shootings and the death count. These truths demand some explanation, why are we increasingly in

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The Sin of Greenville

I was watching the Nicole Wallace program this afternoon and much of the discussion centered around Trump’s racist attack on the four Democratic women of color who have become known as, The Squad.

Part of it dealt with those in attendance at last night’s Greenville, NC rally where the assembled crowd shouted in obviously staged unison, “send her back!” This was aimed at the most vulnerable of the targeted Democratic Congresswomen, Ilhan Omar.

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America’s Great Pig War

Most Americans know a little about the times America went to war with Great Britain. There was the War of Independence in 1776 and the War of 1812 in 1812. But how many know anything about the Pig War between America and the mother country?

Over the centuries America has had its problems resolving border disputes between itself and Britain and/or Canada. After all, the border is 5,525 miles long and not, as it seems, a straight line. In the Pacific Northwest, the boundary weaves its way through a large chain of islands and it has not always been sure just which island went with which nation.

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A Little Clarification About the Census & the Constitution

There’s lots of argument these days about what American residents will be asked on the upcoming 2020 census. Trump and the GOP want to ask every person what their citizenship is and the Democrats say no. The question ended up in the SCOTUS and they ruled 5-4 that the question of citizenship could not be asked.

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