This may be the last post before Thanksgiving. I don’t know, but maybe.
Thank you all for being part of my life. Some of you are cyber friends, and some are flesh-and-blood friends.
I have much to be thankful for and recognize God’s hand. Thanksgiving is a good moment to consider that.
Thank you for hanging in there, commenting here on VM, buying my books, and reviewing them. The best way to get me to write more is to give me encouraging reviews on Amazon. Amazon dominates the publishing market completely.
Thanks to you all.
“There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile. We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language, for we intend to see that the crucible turns our people out as Americans of American nationality and not as dwellers in a polyglot boarding house. We have room for one sole loyalty, which is to the American people.” — Theodore Roosevelt.
From the Days of Fighting Sail
Born in Edinburgh into a family of merchants, James Lind was educated at the Royal High School.
In 1731, aged 15, he registered as an apprentice at the College of Surgeons in Edinburgh and, in 1739, became a surgeon’s mate, seeing service around the world in the Navy.
James Lind is remembered as the man who helped conquer killer disease. His reported experiment on board a naval ship in 1747 showed that oranges and lemons were a cure for scurvy. He selected 12 men from the ship, all suffering from scurvy, and divided them into six pairs, giving each group different additions to their basic diet. Some were given cider, others seawater, and a mixture of garlic, mustard, and horseradish. Another group of two was given spoonfuls of vinegar and the last two oranges and lemons. Those fed citrus fruits experienced a remarkable recovery. While nothing new about his discovery – the benefits of lime juice had been known for centuries – Lind had definitively established the superiority of citrus fruits above all other ‘remedies.’
In 1748, Lind retired from the navy and went to Edinburgh University to obtain professional qualifications. In 1753, he published ‘A Treatise of the Scurvy’ and in 1757 ‘An Essay on the Most Effectual Means of Preserving the Health of Seamen in the Royal Navy’, which threw much light on the appalling living conditions and diet of seamen. In 1758, he was appointed physician to the Naval Hospital at Haslar in Gosport, where he investigated the distillation of fresh water from salt water for supply to ships.
Although Lind’s findings on scurvy were recognized at the time, it was not until more than 40 years later that an official Admiralty order was issued on the supply of lemon juice to ships. With this, scurvy disappeared almost completely from the Royal Navy.
** An estimated 17.5 veterans died by suicide every day in 2021. That’s the second lowest rate since 2007 but still translates into nearly 6,400 preventable veteran deaths that year.
More than 71,000 veterans died as a result of suicide from 2011 to 2021. That’s ten times the total number of troops killed in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over 20 years.
** I find a walk in the woods to be refreshing and invigorating. The fact that I’m dragging a dead body has very little to do with it.
**Nobody (including Old NFO) asked me, but… Hannibal the movie – Hannibal and the Carthaginians were not Black (Negroid). They were descendants of Phoenician immigrants and local Berbers (Semites and Hamites, respectively, i.e., Middle Eastern folks). Some people hear Africa and think everyone there is West African Black, which is not at all correct. Denzel Washington (who plays Hannibal) is 70. Hannibal Barca was in his 20s and 30s during the second Punic war. For the record, I like Denzel as an actor, but blackwashing everything gets old.
Beyond the mere historical issue, it seems evident that certain choices are now driven by a desire for inclusivity projected mainly to respond (or rather to BELIEVE in responding) to the social needs of the United States.
Let’s not hide behind the mantra ‘it’s the actor’s ability that matters, not his/her/zer phenotype’ because while it may be a true statement, it’s certainly not the reason behind these casting choices. A white actor will never portray a film about Shaka, Martin Luther King, Barack Hussein Obama (even though 1/2 white or his husband Big Mike – also part white), or Mansa Musa.
Identify the Aircraft
Hint: Torpedo Bomber
This conversation may arise at your Thanksgiving dinner with family you rarely see.