Thoughts

Whaz Up!?! The Anniversary of Robert Johnson’s Blues Recording at the Gunter Hotel


howdy y’all!

It’s been a week with big news!

From the States: Rittenhouse exposes just how fucked up our gun laws are, the House passes the Build Back Better Bill, VP Kamala Harris wields presidential power, however briefly, as the first woman to do so, Steve Bannon is arrested, and President Biden had a birthday!

In Cambodia:

  • It was a short work week thanks to the Water Festival celebrating the end of the rainy season, which hasn’t ended yet because of climate change, and the famous dragon boat races commemorating the victory of King Jayavarman VII’s navy over the Champa navy on the Tonle Sap Lake liberating Cambodia from their domination in 1181. The battle is depicted on the walls of Angkor Wat.
  • We also had the opening of the country to tourism. Anyone able to demonstrate that they have been fully vaccinated may enter the country without quarantine, demonstrating #COVID19 insurance coverage, or paying a $3,000.00 (US) deposit. Come visit, y’all! The country is amazing, but I’m a curmudgeonly host.
  • The Angkor Wat Half Marathon 2021 was postponed until 2 January 2022 giving me an outside chance of upgrading to the half marathon instead of the 10 K.

in personal news, I now weigh a very Joe Bidenly, 181 pounds (82.5 kg) down from my height of 242 pounds (110 kg) in February 2020 at the outset of the #COVID19 pandemic. I spent my time in lockdown hungry. Literally. By June 2020 when we left China for Cambodia, I weighed 85 kg and spent a year at that weight. At the beginning of the school year, I renewed my diet of low carbs, high vegetables, and added running. So, yay, me.

In historical news, we have some important dates coming up next week:

  • The anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy is coming up on Monday 22 November. Presidential historian, Michael Bechloss, has been running pictures of Kennedy in the days and weeks leading up to his assassination letting us know what he was up to and how much time he had remaining in some kind of macabre historical rendition of a car wreck that you can’t help but look at. This was typical of his offerings. I’m not crying! You’re crying!
  • Of course, there’s American Thanksgiving — Thanks Canada for having a Thanksgiving, too, forcing me to distinguish. Who knew? — on Thursday 25 November. Be sure to check out our timely advice for how to cope with your favorite drunk rage uncle around the turkey. It’s really good advice because it really works.
  • On Friday 26 November is Native American Heritage Day heralding the end of Native American Heritage Month. It seems to me that we might coulda done more with that. Pencils it in for next year.
  • A day of particular importance is Tuesday 23 November:

From Ye Olde Blogge Rolle

Ye Olde Blogges I’ve Managed to Read

  • If you’re like me, you use your personal experience in conjunction with social causes. That’s what Charles Davis is doing with his grief after his husband’s passing. He’s looking to restart support groups for the widowed LGBTQ+ community. His latest, I Can’t Erase Our Last Grocery List: Grief Journal, is testimony to the power of grief and good writing.
  • I’ve been on a nostalgic Appalachia kick lately, so I was happy to see this piece, I LEFT MY HEART IN APPALACHIA, by my favorite drawbridge tender, Barb, about a trip to North Carolina, Tennessee, and the DC area she and her husband took.
  • Bassel van der Kolk talked about using psychedelics to treat trauma survivors, and here is a great article summarizing the use of psychedelics to alleviate anxiety in mice, Psychedelics Show Promise in Treating Mental Illness. All I can say is, none dare call it coincidence.
  • A very fine take down of the disgusting hit job that Louisiana senator John Neely Kennedy clumsily tried to lay on Biden nominee for comptroller of the currency, Saule Omarova, from Peter Athas over at First Draft, OWNING THE COMMIES WITH JOHN NEELY KENNEDY.

Friends of Ye Olde Blogge

huzzah!
Jack

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Image Attribution

The image of the Gunter Hotel in San Antonio is from San Antonio Remembers. It’s license status is unknown, but it was found using a Google Image search with Creative Common Licenses.

“robert-johnson” by raymaclean is licensed under CC BY 2.0

22 replies »

    • Howdy Ten!

      I hear you. What’s the old saying the spirit is willing, but the body isn’t? I can think of all these goals and organize myself to do them, but things don’t always go as planned!

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

  1. Thanks, as always for shout out. Hasty really did hit the spot with that one.

    Quite a week for anniversaries. I can still memory time warp myself to when I heard the news from Dallas on 11/22. When I do, it still hurts. Have to wonder how Robert Johnson would have sung that blues if he’d still been around. Ditto for the murder of Tamir Rice.

    Congrats on the weight loss. Dropping 60 pounds should help when you get to that half marathon.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Howdy Bob!

      I often wonder about how the world would be different if JFK or RFK hadn’t died, especially RFK. We wouldn’t’ve had Nixon. Of course, had JFK not been assassinated, we might not’ve had an RFK presidency.

      Michael Beschloss has been running some of the ads and protest signs that the far right ran when Kennedy visited Dallas. They would fit right in with today’s signs: Vote right! Vote white! The only progress we’ve made in the past sixty years is that we’ve let these people take over a political party and pert near the whole dern country!

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 2 people

      • There’s no end to the possible questions of how things would be and have been different had one or both of the Kennedy brothers not been killed, not to mention a few other people in the same time frame (Malcolm X, MLK). LBJ clearly used the grief and shock of JFK’s assassination to help pass key legislation. Would we have managed differently in Vietnam? The Republicans would still have played the Southern Strategy, already were, still are.

        Liked by 2 people

          • There, we get into the perennial debate among historians about the importance or otherwise of Great Men in the course of events, versus the long currents of historical “laws”. One can confidently expect that to remain unresolved.

            Liked by 2 people

            • Howdy Bob!

              In some ways Trump lands with a soft resounding plop on the side of the great man. He really did alter the course of the world. Even though authoritarianism was trending throughout the world, the GQP would not be this close to taking down our democracy if Clinton had won. And, without the US being a true democracy and leading the world — the GQP’s lack of interest in real governance will limit their interest in actually leading the world — everything has changed, but especially our chances of limiting the damage of climate change.

              On the other hand, the GQP would’ve been so anti-Clinton that they would’ve tied the government up in knots to stop her from accomplishing anything, so maybe there would’ve been no real difference.

              Huzzah!
              Jack

              Liked by 2 people

              • They certainly would have obstructed in every way they could find, just as they did with Obama and are now doing with Biden. Once they got the idea that their main job is to keep a Democrat President from accomplishing anything at all, the rot in their ability to ever govern effectively set in hard.

                They cannot possibly get behind any real action to deal with climate change if they are terrified of saying its name.

                Liked by 2 people

                • Howdy Bob!

                  I guess the stakes have become so high and the choices so stark that there is no hiding their true goals. You either are for democracy or against it, for governing or against it, or for limiting climate change or against it. You can’t obfuscate your positions any longer. Of course, I think they think they are beyond accountability with the voters, too, so it just doesn’t matter.

                  Huzzah!
                  Jack

                  Liked by 2 people

                  • As regards the topic of climate change, the stakes and odds are being calculated, or attempted to be calculated, by the actuaries of the insurance industry. They are in the same bind as the climate modelers (on whom they are depending to tell them what will happen) in that they cannot depend on the data of the past to predict the future. Actuaries get very uncomfortable when they can’t calculate a risk. The GOP does respond to the money people. When the investing (and donating) class are clearly told that unless something is done and done fast they will see a lot of uninsurable wealth vanish, they will demand action no matter which party is in power. The catch in that is that it will probably happen too late to keep the temp within the goals.

                    Liked by 2 people

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      The fossil fuel industry sure has been slow to come round to the message that the days of it being a profitable industry are severely limited. They’ve known about the contributions of fossil fuels to climate change since what, the late ’60’s? Their response then, as it is now, is to drill baby drill. By the time they can no longer wring a profit from fossil fuels and decide we’ve all got to change to save the planet, we will be long past the point of no return. And, just like the #COVID19 deniers are doing now, they will blame the liberals for not having stopped them earlier.

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Whenever it might happen, the fossil fuel corporations will try to just walk away from their toxic messes and leaky wells and pipes, just declare bankruptcy and leave the mess behind.

                      Liked by 1 person

    • Howdy Barb!

      It’s been an interesting journey in weight loss. My biggest surprise has been accepting being hungry. I think if I hadn’t been able to do that, I couldn’t do it. The biggest insight is that food companies make money by us buying and eating more food, so… We just don’t need to eat anywhere near what we think we do.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 2 people

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