“Lower ye the landing gear!”

Filed under:General — eric @ 12:30 pm

“Lower ye the landing gear!” “The landing gear be lowered.” In The Ancient of Days: Deity or Manna Machine?, George Sassoon postulizes that the Israelite’s Exodus manna from heaven really came from a machine powered by a small thermonuclear device. He uses biblical passages and an ancient Aramaic Jewish text (the Kabbalah) to reach his conclusion. Suprisingly, this is an interesting and entertaining read.

If you’re into this sort

Filed under:General — eric @ 9:43 am

If you’re into this sort of thing, you can read the wedding ceremony I wrote for my sister. It’s a bit longer than the last one, much more eclectic. My sister Lauryl is remarkably similar to me, and that comes across in the text, I think. After the wedding, my Grandmother asked how I, a never-married single man, came to know so much about marriage. The answer’s simple: the internet. The internet can make you sound like an expert on almost anything.

Last August, the Dallas Observer

Filed under:General — eric @ 5:23 am

Last August, the Dallas Observer wrote a nice even-handed story on Romeo Hristov, the Bulgarian archaeology who made waves by publishing an article about a possible terra cotta Roman head found buried in a pre-Columbian tomb in Mexico. Many art historians feel the head is genuine; many archaeologists are rather skeptical. Hristov had a devil of a time even getting to see the head, which was discovered by one of the fathers of modern Mexican archaeology, Jose García Payón, in 1933, and locked away in a museum. “I was looking for the piece two and a half years. It’s not easy to convince to check. But if you persist, bring beer, tell dirty jokes, eventually they start to like you.” Not everyone does, though. One archaeology professor said “I’m actually teaching a course this spring, based on my encounters with Mr. Hristov and others. The title is Fantastic Archaeology.

As the Shuttlecocks move from

Filed under:General — eric @ 2:06 am

As the Shuttlecocks move from one place to another, they are giving us repeats. Today’s is the classic So Speaks Randon: And your foot massagers! By Grignr, what sort of softling invalids are the people of your world that they need foot massage mats with eleven intensity settings? Even the most gout-ridden, feeble merchant of my world would ask for no more than eight intensity settings, and the strong warriors of my tribe require only five!

It’s fairly common knowledge that

Filed under:General — eric @ 1:13 am

It’s fairly common knowledge that a small Christian church in Ethiopia claims to house the Ark of the Covenant, thanks to Graham Hancock and his book The Sign and the Seal. Portions of the book are on-line and illustrated as part of OneWorld Magazine. The rest of the magazine looks pretty nice, too. For example: a story on the New Mexico pueblo revolt of 1680 and some of the more recent pueblo struggles. This pueblo revolt was the only successful revolt against the Spanish in the Americas, though it was short-lived. The town of Socorro, where I spent my college years, once had a pueblo tribe living there. The town got its name (Socorro means “help” in Spanish) from the life-saving aid that the natives gave the Spanish colonizer of New Mexico, Onate. In the revolt, the Socorro pueblo was one of the few that sided with the Spaniards and they fled with the surviving Spaniards south. The remnants of the tribe can be found in a tiny town outside El Paso named Socorro del Sur — Socorro of the South. Socorro (of the North) still has the original church sitting on the plaza, and it claims to be the oldest church in North America still used for regular services. The school that I taught at was a (very small) Catholic school sitting adjacent to the church. A local legend holds that the Socorro pueblo residents warned the priests of the upcoming revolt in time for the church’s sacred objects (the gold chalices, the sacristy, and other priceless objects) to be hidden in a cave on the mountain behind town. Today that mountain is part of the New Mexico Tech campus, but is used by the military for rather extensive explosives testing.