Early English Territory Occupied By Tribes


Modern English Counties

I am reading a fascinating series of books labeled The Camulod Chronicles. At this point I have completed six of the eight volumes. It is historical fiction based on Arthurian legend. The island we now today as Britain is a territory of warring tribes. The people of these tribes do not trust anybody, ever. They are this way because when one tribe roams into the territory of another tribe it is because they are seeking to take over land, food, women, or valuables. Consequently, each tribe sought to defend itself, and often the outcome was war. These meetings on the battlefield ended when on of the tribes ran out of living warriors. The tribe with the most able warriors plundered, raped, and occupied as was their winning right.

The time period for this story is 400-500 A.D. There were no countries as we know them today, only groups of people who lived near each other for protection. In areas where the group was large the tribe carried a name like Gaul, Saxon, or Dane, and they occupied a large area. As time progressed some of these tribes updated their protection systems by building fortifications. When sighting the enemy the locals all herded into the fort, and closed the gates. Most tribes had one man who ruled over all the others as king or warlord.

The Camulod Chronicles narrates the evolution of the many tribes into an alliance of tribes which eventually become a single kingdom made up of many smaller kingdoms. Throughout the story I couldn’t help thinking of how our current world is trying so hard to devolve back into a wild state of existence. The longing for open borders with men traveling from place to place freely is reminiscent of the original tribes who wandered and looked for something better by deliberately wandering into a neighbors territory.

Europe was the territory inhabited by tribes which eventually defined themselves into discrete territories with boundaries. They gave their domains names likes France, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Denmark, Austria, Sweden, Finland, Norway, and England. They all had boundaries, discreet languages, laws, and governments. Then in the late sixties there were some on the continent of Europe who thought it might be more efficient if they united into a single entity like the United States. One of the first things they did was to open their borders to allow people to have free movement from place to place. Then over a period of twenty to thirty years they standardized on a currency. Things were going along pretty smoothly until the head of the European Union began to place restrictions and regulations into place that silently began to change the cultures of the nations.

Another event happened more recently, that is the mass migration of Muslims from war-torn countries disguised as refugees. Nothing could be done to stop the flow because the borders were open and the migrants were free to roam as they pleased looking for countries with social systems that they could plunder. Britain wised up and decided to exit the European Union and to reclaim its sovereignty as an independent nation. My guess is that is because Britain has a good sense of history and has rejected the progressive idea that history must be rewritten to encompass  the vision of the future. The Camulod Chronicles splendidly depicts the story of how painful it was for Britain to become the great country it is

Perhaps the European Union will succeed some day into uniting the countries of Europe into one nation. While this evolution is taking place I venture to guess that the EU will undergo several periods of devolution.

In the meantime, the same genius jerks who propose to unite Europe are working overtime to devolve the United States into a primitive un-united warring state.

The Chinese curse is working, “May You Live In Interesting Times.”


Why? and Because.
1.. WHY
Why do men’s clothes have buttons on the right while women’s clothes have buttons on the left?
When buttons were invented, they were very expensive and worn primarily by the rich. Since most people are right-handed, it is easier to push buttons on the right through holes on the left.  Because wealthy women were dressed by maids, dressmakers put the buttons on the maid’s right!  And that’s where women’s buttons have remained since.
2 … WHY?
Why do ships and aircraft use ‘mayday’ as their call for help?
This comes from the French word m’aidez – meaning ‘help me’ – and is pronounced,
approximately, ‘mayday.’
3 … WHY?
Why are zero scores in tennis called ‘love’?
In France , where tennis became popular, the round zero on the scoreboard looked like an egg and was called ‘l’oeuf,’ which is French for ‘the egg.’  When tennis was introduced in the US, Americans (naturally), mispronounced it ‘love.’
4 … WHY?
Why do X’s at the end of a letter signify kisses?
In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to read or write, documents were often signed using an X. Kissing the X represented an oath to fulfill obligations specified in the document. The X and the kiss eventually became synonymous.
5 … WHY?
Why is shifting responsibility to someone else called passing the buck’?
In card games, it was once customary to pass an item, called a buck, from player to player to indicate whose turn it  to deal.  If a player did not wish to assume the responsibility of dealing, he would ‘pass the buck’ to the next player.
6 … WHY?
Why do people clink their glasses before drinking a toast?
In earlier times it used to be common for someone to try to kill an enemy by offering him a poisoned drink.  To prove to a guest that a drink was safe, it became customary for a guest to pour a small amount of his drink into the glass of the host. Both men would drink it simultaneously. When a guest trusted his host, he would only touch or clink the host’s glass with his own.
7… WHY?
Why are people in the public eye said to be ‘in the limelight’?
Invented in 1825, limelight was used in lighthouses and theatres by burning a cylinder of lime which produced a brilliant light. In the theatre, a performer ‘in the limelight’ was the Centre of attention.
8 … WHY?
Why is someone who is feeling great ‘on cloud nine’?
Types of clouds are numbered according to the altitudes they attain, with nine being the highest cloud. If someone is said to be on cloud nine, that person is floating well above worldly cares.
9 … WHY?
In golf, where did the term ‘Caddie’ come from?
When Mary Queen of Scots went to France as a young girl, Louis, King of France, learned that she loved the Scots game ‘golf.’ He had the first course outside of Scotland built for her enjoyment. To make sure she was properly chaperoned (and guarded) while she played, Louis hired cadets from a military school to accompany her. Mary liked this a lot and when she returned to Scotland (not a very good idea in the long run), she took the practice with her.  In French, the word cadet is pronounced ‘ca-day’ and the Scots changed it into caddie.
10 … WHY?
Why are many coin collection jar banks shaped like pigs?
Long ago, dishes and cookware in Europe were made of dense orange clay called ‘pygg’. When people saved coins in jars made of this clay, the jars became known as ‘pygg banks.’  When an English potter misunderstood the word, he made a container that resembled a pig.  And it caught on.
Bet you don’t know “Big cheeks”
Big cheeks. A grandson of slaves, a boy was born in a poor neighborhood of New Orleans known as
the “Back of Town.”  His father abandoned the family when the child was an infant. His mother became
a prostitute and the boy and his sister had to live with their grandmother.
Early in life he proved to be gifted for music and with three other kids he sang in the streets of New Orleans.
His first gains were coins that were thrown to them.
A Jewish family, Karnofsky, who had emigrated from Lithuania to the USA, had pity for the 7-year-old boy
and brought him into their home. Initially giving ‘work’ in the house, to feed this hungry child. There he
remained and slept in this Jewish family’s home where, for the first time in his life, he was treated with
kindness and tenderness.
When he went to bed, Mrs. Karnovsky sang him a Russian lullaby that he would sing with her. Later, he
learned to sing and play several Russian and Jewish songs.
Over time, this boy became the adopted son of this family. The Karnofskys gave him money to buy his
first musical instrument; as was the custom in the Jewish families.
They sincerely admired his musical talent. Later, when he became a professional musician and composer,
he used these Jewish melodies in compositions, such as St. James Infirmary and Go Down Moses.
The little black boy grew up and wrote a book about this Jewish family who had adopted him in 1907.   In
memory of this family and until the end of his life, he wore a Star of David and said that in this family, he
had learned “how to live real life and determination.”
You might recognize his name.  This little boy was called: Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong.
Louis Armstrong proudly spoke fluent Yiddish!
And “Satchmo” is Yiddish for “Big Cheeks”!

171229-More Lexophile Fun

“Lexophile” describes those that have a love for words, such as “you can tune a piano, but you can’t tuna fish”, or “To write with a broken pencil is pointless”     An annual competition is held by the New York Times see who can create the best original lexophile
This year’s winning submission is posted at the very end.
No matter how much you push the envelope, it’ll still be stationery.
If you don’t pay your exorcist you can get repossessed.
Im reading a book about anti-gravity. I just cant put it down.
I didnt like my beard at first. Then it grew on me.
When you get a bladder infection, urine trouble.
When chemists die, they barium.
I stayed up all night to see where the sun went, and then it dawned on me.
I changed my iPods name to Titanic. Its syncing now.
England has no kidney bank, but it does have a Liverpool ..
Haunted French pancakes give me the crepes
This girl today said she recognized me from the Vegetarians Club, but I’d swear I’ve never met herbivore
I know a guy who’s addicted to drinking brake fluid, but he says he can stop any time.
A thief who stole a calendar got twelve months.
When the smog lifts in Los Angeles U.C.L.A.
I got some batteries that were given out free of charge
A dentist and a manicurist married. They fought tooth and nail.
A will is a dead giveaway.
With her marriage, she got a new name and a dress.
Police were summoned to a daycare center where a three-year-old was resisting a rest.
Did you hear about the fellow whose entire left side was cut off? He’s all right now
A bicycle can’t stand alone; it’s just two tired.
The guy who fell onto an upholstery machine last week is now fully recovered.
He had a photographic memory but it was never fully developed.
When she saw her first strands of gray hair she thought she’d dye.
Acupuncture is a jab well done. That’s the point of it.
Those who get too big for their pants will be totally exposed in the end.

Things I Have Forgotten








Last week I dreamed I was at work. It has been sixteen years since I have worked for a living, and being at work in the dream was delightful, except for one thing. I couldn’t remember a specific word that I used daily to describe a special property of the material we used to make our number one product. That spoiled my dream. Up to that point I enjoyed being an expert on the material properties. I liked to call myself an expert on the material but I was, and am still far from it, but compared to an ordinary Joe I am an expert. The same holds true for today, I am far from an expert on the use or workings of a computer, but I am further advanced in know-how than the circle of friends I hang with, they consider me a computer guru. I am also one to try to do things with a computer that no one else does, and I get very little help from anyone I know. For example, recently I conducted a class in which the students gave answers to a questionnaire. The result of the answers are meaningless unless they are compiled into an aggregate. I used Excel to do the job. I tried showing the total result to the class via a projector connected to my PC. The results were totally unreadable on the big screen. Nevertheless projecting data on a screen from a computer was impressive. The next week I imported the Excel data into a Power-Point program to display, they were better. I had used Excel in my work but this new Excel was so different it took me some time and experimentation to learn how to work with it. At the end, I concluded that although I finally made some nice graphs that the new Excel didn’t have the capabilities of the sixteen year older versions I had used. In my work I made some really comprehensive and detailed graphs to display data just like engineers did before computers. As the class progressed I kept adding more results to the Power Point until the class concluded. The last session will use the total results to make decisions about improvement projects.

While doing all this it became clear to me that I would like to show the Power Point presentation to more people. I thought I could just plug it in and play it in a loop over and over to use as a backdrop during a dinner. After much experimentation I learned that Power Point is not capable of looping.  To do what I wanted to do I would have to make a movie of my presentation. Not a problem I thought, I am very familiar with iMovie having made a dozen or so movies from my old super eight films. Except the latest iMovie program is now five years newer than the one I used forcing me to learn how to use iMovie all over again. In the process of learning, I discovered it would be easier to save my Power Point slides as jpeg images. You don’t want to know how much I swore at Apple while learning that to be necessary.

As I developed this movie using bland data I added my organization goals into the mix, now the movie was really bland. To spice things up I decided to add some canned videos before, and after my bland data, short, colorful, and informative videos one before and one after. The movie got better, except that the videos would not draw everyone into the presentation, so I added home video snips from my organization activities. This added personality to the thing and tied it all together. Making the movie was becoming easier as I repeatedly experimented with the various elements.

When I had a finished product to my satisfaction I found the loop feature in iMovie and added it; wallah mission accomplished except it wouldn’t loop.

I was giving up at this point and said it is time to burn this project to disk so I can play it on any kind of player. I set it up to burn using iDVD. I’ve used iDVD successfully many times. This time I let the computer run for twenty-eight hours before I finally shut it off to try something else. I examined the disk and there is no evidence of any transfer. I tried playing the disk and it showed up empty. In the back of my head I kept wondering if using videos from YouTube had anything to do with it. Yep it does (most likely because it is copyrighted material). I removed the videos, and the movie burned albeit with out some key entertainment. In desperation I tried showing the original file which I had saved as an MP4 on my projector and it played, but it won’t loop. I gave up and have not touched it since. Maybe it will come to me in a dream.

Today, I was delivering food to a family in need with my Lions Club and the word popped into my head, hygroscopic! That is the property of nylon that gives it the ability to gain or lose moisture from the atmosphere. Then the words nucleated, amorphous, crystalline all popped into my mind; my dream is now successfully finished.

Have you ever heard the adage “I have forgotten more than you will ever know?”


PSA-171130-A Wise Man Said


Thomas Jefferson
His Portrait is on the Two $2.00
Dollar Bill.
Thomas Jefferson
was a very remarkable man who started
learning very
early in life and never stopped.
At 5, began
studying under his cousin’s tutor.
At 9, studied
Latin, Greek and French.
At 14, studied
classical literature and additional languages.
At 16, entered
the College of William and Mary.
Also could write in Greek with one hand
while writing the same in Latin with the other.
At 19, studied
Law for 5 years starting under George Wythe.
At 23, started
his own law practice.
At 25, was
elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses.
At 31, wrote the
widely circulated “Summary View of the Rights of British America” And
retired from his law practice.
At 32, was a
delegate to the Second Continental Congress.
At 33, wrote the
Declaration of Independence.
At 33, took
three years to revise Virginia’s legal code and wrote a Public Education
bill and a statute for Religious Freedom.
At 36, was
elected the second Governor of Virginia succeeding Patrick
At 40, served in
Congress for two years.
At 41, was the
American minister to France and
negotiated commercial treaties with
European nations
along with Ben
Franklin and John Adams..
At 46, served as
the first Secretary of State
under George
At 53, served as
Vice President and was elected
president of the American Philosophical
At 55, drafted
the Kentucky Resolutions and
became the active head of Republican
At 57, was
elected the third president of the
At 60, obtained
the Louisiana Purchase doubling
the nation’s
At 61, was
elected to a second term as President.
At 65, retired
to Monticello ..
At 80, helped
President Monroe shape the
At 81, almost
single-handedly created the University of Virginia and served as its first
At 83, died on
the 50th anniversary of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence along
with John Adams.
Thomas Jefferson
knew because he himself studied the previous failed attempts at government.
He understood
actual history, the nature of God, His laws and the nature
of man. That happens to be way more than what most understand
Jefferson really
knew his stuff.
A voice from the
past to lead us in the future:
John F. Kennedy
held a dinner in the White House for a group of the brightest minds
in the nation at that time. He made this statement: “This is perhaps
the assembly of
the most intelligence ever to gather at one time in
the White House with the exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined
“When we
get piled upon one another in large cities, as in
we shall
become as corrupt as Europe “
democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those
who are
willing to work and give to those who would not.”

“It is
incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes.
principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the

predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government
from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of

reading of history convinces me that most bad government
from too much government.”
“No free
man shall ever be debarred the use of
strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms
as a
last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in

tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to
with the
blood of patriots and tyrants.”
compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he
abhors is sinful and tyrannical.”

Jefferson said in 1802:
believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than
standing armies.
If the
American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their
first by
inflation, then by deflation,
banks and corporations that will grow up around
the banks
deprive the people of all property –
their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers

War Horses and Stone Masons

Knights _276_506918127

Wow! I just finished reading Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth. WOW because the book is just short of a thousand pages long, and wow because the story is amazing, entertaining, and spell binding. Follett claims to be an atheist, but his book is mainly about the Catholic Church in England in the years 1123-1174. Of course when one writes a story about a period that far removed from us it can be false, and sound real. I believe this story to be based on real life in the 1100’s.

This epic is based on one man’s dream to build a cathedral. I visited cathedrals in Munich, London, and Montreal, and was totally awe-struck by the immensity of the buildings. How in the hell did they ever build this building in an age before modern machines? Pillars of the Earth explains how it was done in a fictional story that takes place over a period of fifty-one years. That is how long it takes to make a cathedral using manual labor.

The story line contains so many, characters, plots, and lives I found myself living in the period as an observer. If this story were made into a movie it would require ten or more two-hour episodes to tell, and I will watch every chapter.


I love history and this is an era of history when Knights, and Kings, and Earls ruled the civilized world of Europe. Today’s kids and parents will go into shock when they learn that girls a young as fourteen were given into marriage, or that couples found having sex before marriage were given penance to live apart for a year before they could be married in the church. They would learn that life for the privileged was far different from the life of someone who did not have money to live on. The 1100’s gave meaning to the term “street people.” Common folk lived in homes of one or two rooms with little to no furnishings. Families slept in one room, and kids learned about sex by watching the action around them. Food was simple; usually dry bread and watered down beer. Workers were paid a penny a day. Families lived on six pennies a week. Kids worked. Royalty, lived much better, but a family of 2017 lives much better than did the royalty of 1117.

I rate this story at five stars, but it is equal to reading four normal books.

What Is Justice?

O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
‘Tis the star-spangled banner, O! long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion,
A home and a country, should leave us no more?
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps’ pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave,
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

O thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war’s desolation.
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the Heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: ‘In God is our trust.’
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

After watching about nine minutes of Kaepernick’s interview I have some questions of my own.
What is his definition of justice? Does it mean an eye for an eye, or does it mean you are entitled to a trial by a jury of your peers. A few of his points may have some validity like cops assuming all blacks are evil, and are guilty until proven innocent. He cites an example of an experience he had where he and some team mates were moving into a house in an all white neighborhood, and the cops showed up, entered the house unannounced, and began to ask questions. Again, I have a question for Kaepernick. Isn’t the crime rate for young black men higher than any other age or race group? If I were a cop I’d be very careful of how I approached a black guy during a call. My step son was a cop, and he had an experience where he caught a guy leaving the scene of a robbery.(It was in the middle of the night, all businesses were closed and this guy was coming out of a window). He apprehended the guy, but the perp resisted. They wound up in a wrestling match. The man he caught happened to be black. In his futile attempt to escape the perp bit my son on the forearm. Son lost the use of his arm for several weeks due to nerve damage. After the whole thing went down the perp filed a lawsuit against my son citing a violation of his civil rights.
If Colin wants to do some good for his people, and this country he should use his notoriety to teach young, and old men of color not to do stupid things when a gun is pointed at them, or when a cop is shouting stop.

Kaepernick sees only through his black eyes, and does not see what is happening with his white eyes. How can he know that blacks are oppressed when he has not seen the white side of things? He can only assume that the whites are being treated with more justice than the blacks. His idea of justice is warped too. Just means all people are treated fairly. Our system uses a well f=defined set of laws to define how people are to be judged. Our police are trained in methods of restraint, capture, and self-defense. On the self defense side when someone is threatening you, you have but nano seconds to decide how you will react. Often your training will summon you to shoot first and ask questions later. Otherwise your widow may be the one seeking justice, which is usually a sentence to jail.

Kaepernick should be very careful about his scheme to fight for the oppressed it may well backfire on him.

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