Category Archives: History

The Minstrel Show

I actually saw a real minstrel show, in the East Lansdowne Public School auditorium, of all places. My grandparents took me! It had a Mr. Bones and all. Very strange. It was at night, and there was a charge to … Continue reading

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The Ringling Museum in Sarasota

If you think the Peirce-du Pont House at Longwood Gardens is impressive, you should see the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, FL. It, too, has a mansion, but with the pretentious name Cà D’Zan, which, they tell us, is Venetian slang … Continue reading

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The Tasmanian Tiger

“Paper Tiger,” by Brooke Jarvis. The New Yorker, 7/2/2018. This is one of the many New Yorker articles I planned to skip, but a quick glance, and I was hooked. But first, I had some background work to do. Tasmania, … Continue reading

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The Speenhamland Solution

“Take the Money And Run,” by Nathan Heller. The New Yorker, 7/9/2018. In 1795, the magistrates of the English village of Speenhamland met to solve a financial crisis: The increasing price of grain was placing more people in  poverty, even … Continue reading

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Halls of Montezuma

So, I was talking with Gus again, the old marine fighter pilot from WWII at the senior center. In the movies and cartoons, “Gus” was always the mechanic, a wizard in salvaging shot-up airplane parts to “keep ’em flying.” But … Continue reading

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Giuliani’s NYC Club

“Beating the Drum,” by Jeffrey Toobin. The New Yorker, 9/10/2018. I am ignoring the main theme of this long article (an excellent article that suggests lawyer and former mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani has adopted Trump’s strategy of … Continue reading

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Crazy Little Mama

I came across this song, popular in the mid-1950s, and its simple melody stuck in my mind (an earworm), so I researched it a little further. Its correct title is really a later line, “At My Front Door.” It was … Continue reading

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