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Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Thanks to that peculiar elitist quirk of WordPress by which it insists on following Greenwich Mean Time, even though it is still the evening of Monday, March 18 at Port Swiller Manor (the 15th anniversary of the birth of the Eldest Gel, by the bye, and what would have been the Old Gentleman’s 79th or 80th), here in the virtual world of the Stilton and walnuts we are already well over half an hour into Tuesday, March 19.

Regular friends of the decanter will recall that ol’ Robbo often has voiced his opinion that Tuesday is the very worst day of the week.  In the past, I usually have laid the blame for this at the feet of what one might sum up as general work-week psychological harmonics.  (“Hole in the week” is my general term for this phenomenon, as you will know if you’ve been paying attention.)

Well, thanks to the Mothe, whose apparently inexhaustible and restless intellect has caused her to sign up for a Modern Greek History course up ta the local college, I may have stumbled upon a genuine historickal basis for my disdain.

You see, I have long known that Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453.   After some painful mental scrambling, sometimes I also can remember that it was, in fact, on May 29th of that year, after a siege of roughly six weeks, that the last Byzantine Emperor, Constantine XI Palaiologos, is said to have fallen defending his gates from the barbarian horde as they rushed in to sack the Imperial Capital.  (Where the Emperor actually met his end is, technically, not known.  However, the tradition that he died defending the gates is one of those of which ol’ Robbo says, “If it isn’t true, it ought to be.”)

Aaaanyhoo, what I didn’t know, and what the Mothe was able to tell me, is that May 29, 1453 was, in fact, a Tuesday.  Furthermore, she informs me that, since then, Tuesday traditionally has been viewed as a day of ill-omen among the Greeks, bad luck attending anything associated with it.

Well, ladies and gentlemen, what can I say?   What I had thought was just a grumbly dislike of having to slog through the most tedious work day of the cycle turns out to have some kind of Jungian gunnegshun to my much greater fear and loathing concerning the collapse of Western Civilization, after all.  Who’d a’thunk it?

Of course, I’m not going to go all, all….(Oh, shoot! Who was that insufferable actress of my yoot who claimed to have lived past lives?  Shirley-somebody, I think….), well, I’m not going to suggest that I was Constantine XI Palaiologos in a previous life, but, as I say, it would seem that his spirit somehow or other found its way into a corner of my braims.

UPDATE:  Alas, ol’ Robbo is starting to show signs of senility, because when hitting the “publish” button, I completely forgot to include the linky to the lovely and talented Sleepy Beth’s compilation of several different versions of the obvious theme song for this post.  My apologies….


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March 2013