The People’s Republic of Kalifornia has banned Thanksgiving but it’s now official and I will be going there. Don’t worry, we’re calling it a protest, so it will be legal. The police will be there, eating with us – secretly monitoring the consumption of Turkey.  The holiday will be only one of at least two Thanksgiving dinners we’re doing over this holiday period. It may end up to be three or more, with family and friends in different states. Hopefully the election will work out and we can be thankful for four more years of President Trump with a Republican legislature in addition to everything else.

Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we diet.


Caption: From the Kingdom of HeavenDirector’s Cut

I thought that a film by that name would be an appropriate topic for a Sunday Sermonette.

The 2005 movie, Kingdom of Heaven was a very good film. The Director’s Cut, is almost a different movie. A great deal was sliced from the original film to make the theatrical release.

While the film (including the Director’s Cut) was only loosely based on historical fact, it’s good enough to make the film and the story as told, compelling and worth watching. Indeed, it’s one of my very favorite Hollywood productions. Unlike most Hollywood productions, they worked very hard to get the arms and armor correct. If there are flaws, they’re not significant in my opinion. Watching the film is the suggestion for a Sunday Sermonette.


Wolf Clans

Many people have claimed brotherhood with wolves. The Roman Twins, Romulus and Remus were said to have been raised by a she-wolf, and the twins were suckled by it. Many Roman legions were named Geminus (twins) in their honor. Each Gemini legion had a different number to differentiate itself, but the honor went to the twins, raised by the wolf.

In the Americas, clans respecting the wolf allowed initiates to be indoctrinated into wolf lore. Loyalty to the pack transcended wolves themselves.

In England, our fellow blogger, Juliette, has a second wolf now, Halo.


At the White Wolf Mine in Arizona, we honor those cultures.


The Second Opium War

British troops occupying Peking, China, looted and then burned the Yuanmingyuan, the fabulous summer residence built by the Manchu emperors in the 18th century. China’s Qing leadership surrendered to the Franco-British expeditionary force soon after, ending the Second Opium War and Chinese hopes of reversing the tide of foreign domination in its national affairs.

In the 1870s, Chinese Empress Dowager Cixi began rebuilding the palace and its stunning gardens, renaming it Yiheyuan, or “Garden of Good Health and Harmony.” In 1900, during the BOXER REBELLION the palace was burned again by Western troops, and it remained dilapidated until the Chinese Communists rebuilt it in the 1950s.

There are some who claim that the Communist Chinese governments efforts to flood the US with fentanyl is revenge for this situation that existed (but didn’t include the US for the most part).

The Media

Trump vs Biden

Big Tech 

It the Sermonette and technically you’re supposed to pray for your enemies but you will be excused (as far as this blog is concerned) if you knock Big Tech off your prayer list.


  1. So, China is still mad that westerners destroyed mega-mansions owned by the super rich, who were oppressing the proletariat?
    And they claim to be Communists?

    • They certainly do claim it.

      A few years ago, I spoke to locals in the worker’s paradise and pointed out that China was a capitalist country (rampant capitalism). They stridently maintained that I was wrong and that they were all good communists.

      It’s a one-party system run by 11 oligarchs.

  2. You Sir, are a daily read. Thank you.
    I enjoyed the little aside regarding wolves and their importance to clan and team building throughout history. Two names (I felt) were worthy of inclusion there, first is Lord Baden Powell and the world-wide scouting movement he created. I too was one and fondly remember the organisation and how you progressed. A system much missed in today’s world (especially the business world). Secondly comes my favorite prose and poetry creator Rudyard Kipling. In hes works are the same recurring themes regarding wolves, mostly in his children’s works where they achieved (for many of us) the same themes Powell created and also supplied a vehicle wherein one can find two magnificent British actors plying their trade and succeeding wonderfully. I suspect I am preaching to the wrong host, but many (far too many) of your readers may be unfamiliar with either. for the curious, there is the internet.
    Again Sir, keep being you.
    Fair winds.

    • I believe that Lord Baden Powell is rolling in his grave with what became of the Boy Scouts of America.

      Thank you for reading.

  3. Usually Thanksgiving and Christmas are hosted by my sister-in-law who has the big house, but since she’s a good donkey and suffers from coronaphobia, that’s not to be this year. Luckily the son will be taking up the slack and a proper Thanksgiving will happen for those of us not cowering in fear.
    I saw the theatrical version of Kingdom of Heaven. I’ll have to check out the director’s cut.

      • Director’s cuts often are. Sometimes the addition of just a few minutes of footage deleted make a difference, filling in plot holes. Sam Peckinpaugh films, notably The Wild Bunch and Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, were far better when returned to the way Sam meant them to be.

  4. Good on you for heading to Cali for Thanksgiving – stick it to the Man, and watch out for the revenuers at the border!


  5. The movie “Kingdom of Haven” has long been one of my favorites, the directors cut is a better story. Another one I like is “Ride with the devil”, civil war times… A good story and a glimpse into how life was in that part of the world back then.

  6. It hasn’t been decided yet who’ll be hosting Thanksgiving this year for the clan. I wouldn’t mind having it here, but that’s up to SLW. It’s a lot of work, but everybody pitches in, and many hands make for quick work.

    I’ve known one person with a wolf/dog hybrid. He was a really smart dog, but very wary of strangers. Once he saw you and his owner being friends, he figured you were OK, and was quite friendly. He had a strange, far away look in his eyes, something that you don’t normally see in a dog.

    • If I was home more often, DRJIM, I think I’d go for a wolf or hybrid. I’m not around enough and there isn’t anyone to take care of the wolf.

  7. Juliette has become a Wolf Sitter, which is an honorable if dangerous vocation.

    Curiously, my great grandmother on my mon’s side had some loot from the Summer Palace. Jade seals, I think.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m an empire loyalist, but I don’t think we should’ve have destroyed that.

  8. Love KoH…will definitely look into the directors cut. Exceptional quote from King Baldwin:

    “A King may move a man, a father may claim a son, but remember that even when those who move you be Kings, or men of power, your soul is in your keeping alone. When you stand before God, you cannot say, “But I was told by others to do thus.” Or that, “Virtue was not convenient at the time.” This will not suffice. Remember that.”

  9. Regarding why China may hate the US because of the Boxer Rebellion, well, US Marines punched way above their already high level during the battle for the Legations. And the relief landing forces of Marines went through the Boxers like poop through a goose, again punching way above their weight even compared to other foreign forces.

    One of my mother’s relatives was at the Legation. And in Cuba during the Span-Ami war. And in New Oleans during a cholera epidemic. He got around apparently.

    As to the movie, yes, really good. Want to know why so few Crusaders kicked Moslem butt? Because the Crusaders were overall better fighters and fought as heavy shock troops, something the Moslems really didn’t do well. Haven’t seen the DC version, will have to find it.

    Sad that petty politics and stupidity doomed the Crusader states. Dammit. If they had just all got along, how much better the world would have been?

    • The DC is a completely different film. Much better. YOU would like it better, Beans.

      Mohammedans were mostly horse archers, which is to say they fought as skirmishers. As you point out, the Crusaders fought in a line of battle with heavy lances and the Arabs couldn’t take a charge head on. Their horses were Arabians, not Andalusians and that made a big difference too. The arms and armor were completely different. Though to be fair, by the third Crusade, the Crusaders had Saracen allies who fought with them from time to time based on the politics at hand. And the Europeans fought among themselves. It was a complex time politically.

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