February 12th, 2021

diarmuid

Digging up old posts

Coming up on 19 years here at livejournal... and my oldest kid is going to be 18! Yow!

On heredibility, IQ, environment, and class: https://meep.livejournal.com/445183.html -- I noted this wasn't all that surprising:
Actually, this makes me think of mortality improvements in Western society, and my own "stunted" physique. Most of us have seen clothes and armor from centuries ago that show us how much smaller our ancestors were -- but much of that small stature was due to rampant childhood illnesses and poor nutrition. There have been plenty of tall people throughout history, and one usually finds that they were a well-fed, healthy population. Nowadays, kids are fed all sorts of fortified food, so rarely do we find stunted growth except in rare instances (I've known people who were in accidents during adolescents and the full body casts they had to wear prevented them from gaining several inches in height.) Almost all height differences seen now are due to genetics rather than nutrition. However, if in 1900 a study was done that showed that height differences were due mainly to genetics, and that study was done among the well-fed upper classes... well, why bother making sure bread & milk are fortified when those poor classes were all going to be short anyways, due to their genes?
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diarmuid

The Greatest American

Thanks to a friend['s kid] who has introduced me to this amazing guy:


So, Stu decided to look up this guy's "memoir" .... and yeah, of course it's on the Gutenberg Project

[note to young folks: the Gutenberg in question is not Steve]

A Pickle for the Knowing Ones

An excerpt:

What is a presedent answer A king bonne partey the grate has as much power as A king and ort to have & it is a massey he has for the good of mankind he has as much power as Any king for grat ways back there must be A head sum whare or the peopel is Lost Lik wild gees when thay Lous the gander two Leged want A head if fore Leged both & 2 Leged fouls the Name of presedent is to pleas the peopel at Large the sound souts best Now in the south give way to the North the North give way to the south or by & by you will brake what falers be wise on keep the Links to gether and if you cant A gree Consoalated to A kingly power for you must keep together at the wost hear it Labers ye les see there is so many men wants be the all offesers & Now sogers poor king Every day wants A bone sum more then others the king cant Live without the feald wee have had our turne grat good father Addoms [9]turne & turne About Rest Easey you all will be pleased with the present king give time all did I say Now but the magor part fore fifths at least.




Well, he knew how to spell "answer". Not sure how.

Seriously, though, some smartass did a preface of this amazing book ending with the phrase: "We ne'er shall look upon his like again." -- thing is, while the very specific details were unique, someone who got really lucky and had fortunate results in so many things with so little reason... yeah, that sort of luck happens pretty frequently. Especially if you marry a wealthy widow.

And, the greatest thing ever, Timothy Dexter added the following for the second edition of his very short book [of which I couldn't read more than a paragraph.... as I said to Stu "there is a reason we have standardized spelling"]:

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??????????????????????????????????????
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??????????????????????!???????????????

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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and came with this explanatory note:

"fouder mister printer the Nowing ones complane of my book the fust edition had no stops I put in A Nuf here and thay may peper and solt it as they plese"



So, given how that's written..... I think Mr. Dexter was the forebear of 4chan. I think this guy was more successful than Oscar Wilde in living life as a work of art, and maybe he was just a complete troll.

Or just an ignorant nut who got really, really lucky.