Add this to the list of things to go imminently wrong: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrington_Event.
If climate change doesn't precipitate the end of Civilization this just might well. We've built it all - satellites, telecommunications, internet - all in very slender window of opportunity where nothing has gone wrong. But knowing that it can - and most likely will - we've taken no steps to prepare for what should be regarded as an inevitable - but preventable - calamity.
And it's just a matter of time. Sunspots peak every 11 years, and we're only 4 or 5 away from the next maximum, and who is preparing?
- Category: Ideas & Questions
And, one of two great bookstores in Nelson closing, just noticed it on the weekend, popped in, couldn't believe the sign but the owner confirmed it.
The pandemic, and rents on Baker through the roof, and this is it, the community loses another great thing, like the Old Wait's News on Baker and Ward, there 70, 80 years, moved to put in a shoe store, we need more useless gift shops, card shops, ....
Anyways, they're picking the bones of it now as I write this, I couldn't go over, it seems too much like exploiting another's misery.
- Category: Reviews
I get a call from Fed-Ex, Filipino, thick, almost unintelligible accent. I have a parcel, but duties must be paid first.
Damn E-Bay, but the item wasn't available in North America so you do what you gotta do...
Anyways, she wants payment of duties before delivery. Fair enough. And I'm trying to give her details, my CC, and she's trying to take the payment but it's just not working...
...not working at all...
If I wasn't expecting the call I'd be damned sure this was a scam.
And I'm wondering why you'd make someone who can't speak English or work your payment software a CSR but that's the way of the world nowadays, just plain broken.
There's a party of foreign voices in the background, and I swear there's not a word of English...
She's confirming the spelling of my name... using her own version of the Nato Alphabet... "B as in Bad...O as in Oily...Y as in Yanghze..." and I'm just shaking my head...
20 minutes of this nonsense, no payment taken, and so she promises to send me a link where I can sort it out myself. It's in no ways intuitive, her name, Mexican, not Filipino, still, 0 English skills and while it's no small miracle it arrived it does make me loathe to use Fed-Ex.
- Category: Conversations
Lost Continents - The Atlantis Theme in History, Science and Literature
Now this was an enjoyable read, in which the author, formidably well read with hundreds if not thousands sources, discusses the intent of Platos' Atlantis, and then gives a rundown of all the expeditions that sought to place it on a map, why it can't be placed on a map, arguing not just from history but from geology, geography, literature and myth.
I mean, he's right, but this is an imaginary place used by Plato to advance his theory of a golden age fallen into decline, but - for an imaginary place it's had an outsized influence on history.
Named in the book are Blavtsky, Manly P Hall, Edgary Cayce, Percy Fawcett, Bulwer Lytton, - amongst countless others, and the argued precursors to Atlantis Mu, Lemuria, Mt Shasta, - Atlantis - for an imaginary place - has a large citizenry and distinguished geological history, which de Camp dryly - and drolly - narrates and explains. This is important, because Atlantis, as a place that exists solely in the unfettered human imagination, is one of the hotbeds of "New Thought", and it becomes an atlas, as it were, of all that new aged flapdoodle and balderdash that people care to deposit there.
A few of the more interesting things and people I came across:
- The Glozel Artifacts
- Hanns Horbiger's Welteislehre theory
- James Churchward's Mu
- Jean-Frédéric Waldeck (Artist, Explorer, Pornographer...)
- Guy Warren Ballard
- Ignatius T.T. Donnelly
- Edgar Lucien Larkin
- R. Swinburne Clymer
- W. Scott Elliot
- Pierre Benoit - "Each of Benoit's novels consist of exactly 227 pages and have the heroine's name begin with the letter "A""
- 'Count' Byron Khun de Prorok
I could go on. The entire book should be a Wikipedia article, with every named character and place a hyperlink that leads you down another rabbit hole, and de Camp drolly sums up the essential flavour of the characters and places and underlying ideas.
- Category: Books
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