The Air at the Top of the Bottle

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Entries Tagged as 'Ancient History'

Richard Shaver on Time and Space

May 12th, 2014 · No Comments

Every now and then, we like to post something about Richard Shaver.  Here we have some of his ruminations on time and space, and, at the end, a bit about tuna.  (Please click to enlarge.) (Posted by Doug Skinner)

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Tags: Ancient History · Literature

Bohemian Archaeology

September 4th, 2011 · 1 Comment

Step inside. Some friends who, like me, frequent that bane of productivity, Facebook, alerted me to a piece recently published in the New York Times, about the short-lived Greenwich Village Bookshop and its very special door. The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas has created a wonderful website for this relic, so that […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Books · Ephemera · Literature · Memories · Places

Prince Robert de Rohan Courtenay

November 12th, 2010 · 3 Comments

I don’t know much about Prince Robert de Rohan Courtenay.  He was, apparently, a familiar figure in Greenwich Village in the ’50s and ’60s; he claimed a number of grandiose titles, and was said to live in a cheap residential hotel around Times Square.  His name shows up in accounts of parties and funerals (he […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Eccentrics

Adventure on Barren Island

March 23rd, 2010 · 2 Comments

Ancient coral or ancient ladies’ swimming cap? On the first day of spring, which in New York City was particularly welcome and unseasonably warm, I took a long walk on the sands of Dead Horse Bay, a quiet inlet tucked away not far from Floyd Bennett Field (the City’s very first airport), now abandoned to […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Clubs and Associations · Diversions · Ephemera · Memories · Places · The Ineffable · Ukulele

Vulgar Wit

August 22nd, 2009 · 7 Comments

There are plenty of ways to make a point quickly and emphatically, but few are as economical as a good interjection. Compared to the expressions one never runs across anymore except in Shakespeare, eighteenth century novels, and Mad Libs, most recent examples are pretty unmusical, uninspired, and linguistically dull: “wow,” “cool,” “awesome,” “Jesus.” This extends […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Diversions · Education · Language · Literature

Moses Battles the Pterodactyls (6)

March 20th, 2009 · 4 Comments

[The serialization of my talk on Darwin's odd cultural impact marches forward.  We take a break from the Scopes Trial to ponder the history of caveman cartoons -- and the curiously tenacious popularity of the brontosaurus.] Well, the legal news is always engrossing, but let’s turn for a moment to the funny pages.  It’s as good […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Belief Systems · Education · Politics

Moses Battles the Pterodactyls (1)

February 14th, 2009 · 1 Comment

[It’s the Darwin bicentennial; it’s time to party like primates.  I’ll tip my bit into the punchbowl by serializing, sip by sip, a talk I gave at the 2006 “Fortean Times” UnCon and the 2007 INFO (International Fortean Organization) FortFest.  It’s mostly about the confused interbreeding of evolution and American culture.  I’ll update it a bit as I post it; […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Animals · Belief Systems · Education · Forteana · Literature · Misconceptions

Go Aggies!

November 21st, 2008 · 1 Comment

In 1923, the USSR was established; the earworm “Yes, we have no bananas” was released; Firestone began selling inflatable tires; a ‘talkie’ made its first public debut; New York revoked Prohibition; insulin became widely available; the Walt Disney Company was founded; the first planetarium opened in Munich; the first electric shaver was patented (by Jacob […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Animals · Bulletins · Education · Places

Moose Milk … and Cookies?

October 14th, 2008 · No Comments

An article in this Sunday’s New York Times celebrates an organization  dedicated to the historical documentation of local ullage (in this case, “local” meaning the 1/3 of the nation comprising the West). ByJESSE McKINLEY TWAIN HARTE, Calif. — Strange where a road trip can begin: a dorm room, a bar stool or Page 283 of […]

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Tags: Ancient History · Belief Systems · Clubs and Associations · Eccentrics · Memories · Misconceptions

The 1924 School Lunch

October 12th, 2008 · 2 Comments

We offer here my talk on school lunches, from “Through the Blackboard.”  It’s stored on another page, so as not to clog the home page.  Happy reading! (Posted by Doug Skinner)

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Tags: Ancient History · Dietary Mores · Education · Ephemera