Saturday, January 20, 2024

The History of the World (Condensed), Ch. 3

Image by JJ Jordan from Pixabay

This is a weekly column consisting of letters to my perspicacious progeny  the Stickies — to advise 'em now, haunt them after I'm deleted.

Trigger Warning: This column is rated SSC-65: Sexy Seasoned Citizens   



Featuring {Dana}Persistent auditory hallucination and charming literary device 

"The historian is an unsuccessful novelist." -H.L. Mencken

Dear Stickies (and gentlereaders),  

Last week, chapter two ended in the year 1776. But before moving on, permit me to explain...

{Wait-wait-wait. Company policy clearly states that new columns are to be posted on Friday evenings at 7:11 p.m.}

True, but in Vol. 4 of the S.O.P. manuals, page 39, it clearly states that if some idiot somehow deletes a completely completed post and spends at least an hour trying to retrieve it, he/she/they has 24 hours to reconstruct same and try again before adopting plan B. 

Now, chapter two ended with, "And then, in 1776, the planet Earth finally caught a break" which brings us to: 

Chapter Three

{Or insert the sound of a throat clearing, to preemptively fend off attacks by far lefties, far righties, Wokies, and the Intersectional Inquisition.}

At this point in our story, I must toss in a few paragraphs from the Reality Checks, Caveats & Premises Department (RCC&P) before proceeding.

The American experiment wasn't conjured out of thin air. The Greeks dabbled in democracy, the Romans ran a republic (at least for a while), and the Brits managed to make a Magna Carta. In my semi-humble opinion, the American experiment can be defined by quoting the most important passage of the Declaration of Independence:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

If you accept that statement as a fundamental given (whether or not you believe in a creator), perhaps one of the most fundamental of givens… Well, If you don’t accept that statement, I fear it’s time for us to go our separate ways; you can keep the cat but I’m keeping most of the vinyl collection.

Big BUT, I freely acknowledge that the next sentence in the declaration could have been:

“Assuming, of course, that you are Caucasian and male."

That was undeniably the way America worked at the time and it was an undeniable flaw. However, it was the local version of how most of the world traditionally worked, a version of reality that lives on here and there.

However, I maintain that some dramatic progress has been made in the last 250 years or so, particularly when compared to however many thousands of years it was considered normal for a given Fred or Barney to club a cutie down at the waterhole to clean the cave and keep an eye on Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm while he and the boys were partying down at the Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes Lodge while being served and serviced by their slaves.

When my mum and dad got together they, and most other people, believed that a man’s job was to bring home the bacon and a woman’s job was to be a domestic engineer. Period. In light of the way many folks look at things today, including me, they weren't entirely correct. But I’m inclined to not only not judge them but to also say thanks. They weren’t evil, and incidentally, they were part of the generation that survived the Great Depression and won World War Two. 

While they were busy saving the world they didn’t know if there would be a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, an era of unprecedented prosperity that lasted from just after WW2 to the late 1970s and would benefit their spoiled kids more than them. Things started getting weird after that, which I’ll get into later.

Finally, let us acknowledge the elephant skulking in the corner of the room. H. sapiens will be H. sapiens. While I’m profoundly grateful for the dumb luck of being a child of, and living in, a country that’s a product of Western Civilization, I’m smarter than I look.

My gratitude is based on two things. Although I think Western Civilization in general, and the USA in particular, is the best we’ve done so far, both are as flawed and imperfect as the H. sapiens that somehow came up with them. Therefore a — We’re number one! We’re number one! — overheated sports fan sort of attitude can be as tacky as wearing socks with summer sandals. 

Let us be quietly smug. The coolest kid doesn’t have to go around telling people he’s (they're?) cool, that’s part of his/her/their, um, coolness. Also, an economic implosion here, a pandemic there, or an asteroid that's bigger than a bus — "Last stop, Earth!" — and the Dark Ages Digest could experience a sudden, dramatic increase in circulation.

(To be continued...)

Poppa loves you,
Have an OK day

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Update: For those of you who are not native Buckeyes but are wondering if they can legally acquire some weed the next time they visit my little corner of Flyoverland, the answer is still no. You can legally smoke it here, but you still can't legally buy it here. 

The House of Reps. (where the holdup is) returned from their month-long Christmas vacay (for one day, and then got back out of Dodge) to pass an override of our five-foot-tall governor's veto of a bill banning transexual women (dudes) from participating in women's sports, which he actually doesn't have a problem with.

But the bill also bans treating children for gender dysphoria. While he does object to surgically altering children (under 18) to treat gender dysphoria he thinks that doing so with hormones should be between them and their parents. 

Given that the override will not take effect if and until the State Senate returns to town and also votes to override, some rather cynical souls think the return of the Reps was a political stunt.  

In the meantime, some of the Reps are saying it could take they don't know how long to craft a bill to replace the citizen's initiative that passed last November that legalized weed with something more to their liking.  


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