I write about history, travel, and whatever crosses my mind. I love to explore and learn, and love history as much as science. I take a different view of the world, and do my best to convey that view when I write.
What Color Does a Leprechaun Wear?
Ask any Boston school child what color a leprechaun wears, the answer will be green. Heck, ask almost any American school child and the answer will be green. I would bet a good Guinness that most lads and lassies with only a drop of Irish blood in them would tell you no self respecting leprechaun would ever be seen in any color but green.
The Adirondack, or Burnell, or Westport, or Muskoka, Chair
Anyone who has ever been to the Adirondacks, or even remotely close to them, knows what an Adirondack Chair is: big, broad back, high enough to rest your head on; large, over sized arms; built on a slight slant to adjust for the steep mountain terrain. All made out of wood. But what is a Muskoka Chair? The same exact thing, except if you call an Adirondack Chair a Muskoka Chair, then you must be a Canadian. And what about a Westport Chair?
Sweethearts for the Sweet
One of the staples of Valentine's Day are Sweethearts, the little candy hearts with short sayings on them. Most of them say things like "Be Mine" or "True Love" or "4 Ever". It's hard to imagine a Valentine's Day without them. So clever of someone to come up with the idea to make a candy valentine card, and a small one at that. Simple candy, simple sentiments. But, of course, like many good ideas, it didn't start out that way.
The Odd History of Valentine's Day
Ancient festivals and legends There were approximately fourteen Christian martyrs named Valentine. There was a bishop in central Italy, a priest in Rome, and a saint in Africa. Saint Valentine in Africa is the only one connected with February 14th, the date being his feast day. There was also a Pope Valentine, but none of these men are in any way associated with romantic love.
A Short History of Hot Chocolate
One of the best things about being out in the cold is coming inside to hot chocolate. But what wonderful culture brought us this delicious beverage that warms us from our toes to our fingertips and has the ability to calm our souls and radiate that oh so slight feeling of euphoria? Was it Norse, travelers of the icy seas? The Laplanders, who outlast the midnight sun?
Let an Animal Tell the Weather
When my kids were in kindergarten, February rolled around and they were given Xerox papers with pictures of furry little rodents to color and cut out. Then they glued them on Popsicle sticks and popped them up and down out of a slit in another piece of paper. If they didn't like Winter that year, they made sure to keep that furry little rodent sticking up from the slit for a while.
Since the beginnings of popular science fiction, the idea of any initial meetings between humans and extraterrestrials have happened overwhelmingly on Earth. From Well's The War of the Worlds, in which the Martians attack, to Clarke's Childhood's End, an attempt at peaceful utopia under alien overlords, the extraterrestrials have come to Earth with more technology, more knowledge, and always, always, more firepower. Whether it's peaceful Vulcans shaking hands with Zefram Cochrane, or multiple fifteen mile wide saucers being deployed over major Earth cities, it is what we Earthlings have come to expect. If you believe in intelligent alien life, you instinctively believe it will eventually come to us.