Author Archives: Mitch

The Windover Bog Bodies, Among the Greatest Archeological Discoveries Ever Unearthed in the United States

The 7,500-year-old remains of 167 people found in a Florida bog in 1982 shows they lived a “hard but good life,” 3,500 years before the pyramids were built.

Theirs was an incredibly caring society. Children’s bodies were almost all found to have small toys in their arms. One older woman, perhaps 50, showed signs of having several broken bones. The fractures occurred several years before her death, meaning that despite her handicap the other villagers cared for her and helped her even when she could no longer contribute significantly to the workload. Another body, that of a 15-year-old boy, showed that he was a victim of spina bifida, a crippling birth defect where the vertebrae do not grow together properly around the spinal cord. Despite his many deformed bones, evidence suggests he was loved and cared for throughout his life. These discoveries are mind boggling when one considers how many ancient (and even a few modern) societies abandon the weak and deformed.

www.ancient-origins.net

What the ‘Both Sides Brigade’ gets wrong about the shutdown

It’s wrong to place blame for the shutdown on Democrats, because Republicans are the only ones setting conditions on reopening government. www.msnbc.com

Also, Trump himself said the shutdown is all his.

Also, if the Democrats give in to Republicans on this, the Republicans will just do it again.

This last point is perhaps the most important one, and it’s one I’ve overlooked in the past couple of days. I found myself thinking, well, yes, Trump is a hateful toddler, but sometimes when the toddler throws a tantrum, you have to give them what they want just to get on with your life. It’s not good parenting, but it ‘s something every parent has had to do now and then, right?

Hundreds of thousands of people are waiting for their paycheck; those people should not be held hostage to Democratic pride and political advantage (I thought), even though the Democrats are 100% in the right here.

But then I realized: If the Democrats give in on this one, the Republicans will just do it again. Why wouldn’t they? If something works, you do it again.

Doroty Stratten

You Must Remember This, a podcast about the history of Hollywood’s first century, did a series of 13 episodes on “dead blondes.” These are 13 sex symbols who died young, including Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, and Jayne Mansfield.

Podcaster Karina Longworth points out that blond, beautiful women occupied a special place in the dark part of the midcentury American male’s libido. You’ve heard of the Madonna/whore complex, right? The idea is that there are “nice girls” a man might marry, and girls he would have sex with and they are not the same girls.

But in the case of the blonde beauty, they WERE the same girl! The blonde beauty was a magic unicorn!

Saddling a real person with the burden of being a magic unicorn will often end badly, and so it is with the stories of the Dead Blondes. They often drank themselves to death when they perceived their looks fading.

Dorothy Stratten’s story is the saddest of the bunch. With the other women, you can at least say that they made adult choices to exploit the role of blonde bombshell. Stratten was a child who was lured to Hollywood by a pimp named Paul Snyder, who virtually sold her to Hugh Hefner. Stratten then got into a relationship with Peter Bogdanovich, a man nearly twice her age. Snyder killed Stratten in a brutal murder-suicide before Stratten was even 21 years old.

Even this podcast about Stratten, which is extremely sympathetic and feminist, gives no sense of who she was and what she was like as a person.

Bogdanovich’s relationship with Stratten was questionable. And yet Bogdanovich seemed to also genuinely love Stratten, and was devastated by her murder. People are complicated that way, and can often be two opposite things at the same time. Later, Bogdanovich married Stratten’s younger sister, when he was 49 and she was 20. They divorced after 13 years.

www.youmustrememberthispodcast.com

De plane!

Herve Villechaize’s signed handprints and footprints in concrete, 1982, can be yours for the low, low price of $3,200 – $146 per month for 24 months! He drew a little caricature of himself at the bottom too. www.ebay.com

Here comes the sun

New research suggests that sunlight is actually good for you. The health benefits of getting plenty of sunshine outweighs the risks of skin cancer. This contradicts decades of common medical wisdom that you should cover up and use plenty of sunscreen whenever you’re outdoors. (Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. I can barely figure out how to work the TiVo remote.) www.outsideonline.com

What’s with all the blog posts today, Mitch?

I use a plugin called Auto Post Scheduler to automatically schedule posts on the blog. This morning I reconfigured the setting that controls how often it spits out a post. And I ended up scheduling about 10 days of posts for today.

Whoops.

I hope you enjoyed them. Posting will resume on a MUCH SLOWER schedule Monday.

I do highly recommend Auto Post Scheduler, notwithstanding typos. wordpress.org