Good morning! It's a lovely oh-six-early here as I begin. Let's see if my fibro-funky fingers can get it done in one go!
General reminder: Please be aware of the weather where you are, and plan accordingly. I am facing heat indicies over 100*F (around 40*C), with high humidity to accompany high temperatures. That means the usual cooling mechanisms won't work, such as sweat, panting, etc.
Yes, I'm already in Pet Sanctuary mode. Heat waves like this always mean my one room becomes a de facto Cat Cooling Parlor.
Today is 7/11 by the way Americans note dates, but it's nothing to do with the convenience store chain 7-Eleven. Originally, those were there hours: 7 AM to 11 PM. They are now open 24 hours as far as I know. Thus does a name linger long after the rationale is gone.
Of course, it's 11 July by Euro ways of writing a date, so... wanna mess up someone? write 11/7 and see if they blink (in the US).
In 1786, Morocco won a ransom contest with the young United States, extorting $10K in exchange for not attacking US ships. Morocco was part of the lands of the Berbers that had earned the name "Barbary Coast" in northern Africa.
Pirates from that region had roamed the western Med and even up to Iceland and over to South America for quite some time, but the term "Barbary pirates" didn't get traction until the 1600s, when the pirates hit peak power. The 1700s saw them decline as European nations started cracking down and striking back.
In their raids on coastal towns in Spain and Italy, the Barbary priates would raid not only for goods but for people to sell into slavery. People gave up living on the coasts and some coastal regions weren't resettled until the 1800s.
The US fought two wars with the Barbary pirates, the first of which (1805) helped give rise to the line "to the shores of Tripoli" in the US Marines hymn. The US Marines, led by one Steven Decatur, went in to destroy a US warship caputred by the pirates (after running aground on a reef, it wasn't like the pirates were *that* good) during a blockade. And thus we get "From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli".
Tripoli, or "three cities" in the original Greek, is/are in modern Libya. That is, ther's a city named Tripoli, but it is one of three originally part of the "tripolis". There is also a Tripoli, Lebanon, b/c hey, the Greeks. Where they didn't get, the Romans did, and the ROmans used Greek as the language of education. (Irony of course being that we now use Latin as our primary "educated" language.)
Tripoli was the center of much of the pirate activity that led to those wars with the United States, hence the USS PHiladelphia blockading her, running aground, and later being destroyed to prevent enemy use of it. The thing about pirates is, they don't stay in one place too long, or the'yre found.
Or, they run into the wrong guy. True story. There were Mediterranean pirates wreaking havoc on ancient ROme's shipping and such. One day they kidnapped a snotty young man named Gaius Julius Caesar (later the Great, the Dictator, That Julius Caesar) for ransom. He promised he'd be back. Since nobody had yet found their lair, the pirates in question had a great big laugh... Until Roman naval forces came in and that was the end of that. Sold into slavery, etc. How did Caesar do it? Other captives had looked for landmarks. But the coastal area in question (Cilicia, or the southeast coast of modern Turkey) was notorious for identifcal-seeming coves. Julius Caesar was irked, but not stupid. He counted how many coves they went past on only one side on the way in to the Secret Cove, such as it was. Essentially, it came down to something like, "Yeah, pirates in the fifteenth cove on the left, have fun," and he personally oversaw the execution of one pirate leader he felt was a particular pain in his butt, according to Livius. True? Probably. Caesar didn't end up running Rome because he was a fluffy kitten.
And on to my day. May yours be soft, comfy, and restful. We could all use that!
I just found out that my roommate from last year is visiting where I live for her birthday today. She is staying with a friend on the floow below me in my apartment building and I am freaking out. I don;t want to see her, and now the chances are kind of high. I can't see her I really really really can't. Why did this need to happen today? Why can't she just go away!? She did such horrible things...
I received a call from my daughter’s school. The school counselor said a student mentioned my daughter making a comment about wanting to OD on the students anti-depressants. I spoke with my daughter and she said it’s all true and because of her dad. I gave lots of hugs and told her how important she is in many lives and loved by so many people. Got her in to see the counselor...