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October 15, 2006

Letting others do the writing

• "God made trees for three reasons: to give us books, to give us baseball bats and to give us shade in which to read books about baseball." Steve Rushin of Sports Illustrated

• Ricky Bobby: From now on, it's Magic Man and El Diablo.
Cal Naughton, Jr.: What does El Diablo mean?
Ricky Bobby: It's like Spanish for like a fighting chicken.

• Concerning the typical medieval housing situation:

The hearth excepted, the home of a prosperous peasant lacked these amenities. Lying at the end of a narrow, muddy lane, his rambling edifice of thatch, wattles, mud, and dirty brown wood was almost obscured by a towering dung heap in what, without it, would have been the front yard. The building was large, for it was more than a dwelling. Benaeath its sagging roof were a pigpen, a henhouse, cattle sheds, corncribs, straw and hay, and last and least, the family's apartment, actually a single room whose walls and timbers were coated with soot ... The centerpiece of the room was a giagantic bedstead, piled high with straw pallets, all seething with vermin. Everyone slept there, regardless of age or gender -- grandparents, parents, children, grandchildren, and hens and pigs -- and if a couple chose to enjoy intimacy, the others were aware of every movement ... If a stranger was staying the night, hospitality required that he be invited to make "one more" on the familial mattress ... If this familial situation seems primitive, it should be borne in mind that these were prosperous peasants.

-- William Manchester, A World Lit Only by Fire

Posted by snackeru at October 15, 2006 10:32 PM


That Manchester quote really makes you realize how good we have things now, and how much we take them for granted.

Posted by: Jeff A at October 16, 2006 9:06 AM

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