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[Ed. – Sorry?]

‘Ooh, ah like a nice tune, ‘yer forced too!

[Ed. – Then you can go on posting?]

Most certainly.  And now, my fellow port swillers, greetings!

Ol’ Robbo didn’t do all that well this past Lent with heightened prayer, meditation, and reading, but he did do a very good job in sacrifice by giving up all musick for the 40 days, apart from an hour or so on Sundays , and sticking to it.

You have to understand that for me, musick is a near-constant presence in my normal life.  I keep the radio on in the car and in my office all day.  I frequently listen to CD’s in the evenings.  I put in a few hours tickling the ivories on the weekends.  Cutting all that out produces a real, well, silence, and is a …SHUT THAT BLOODY BOUZOUKI UP!

[Ed. – Told you.]

A real but manageable penance.

Now that it’s Easter Week, of course, I’m indulging myself to the fullest and enjoying it all the more so for having abstained these past weeks.

He is risen, indeed, two, three…..


(By the bye, the Python sketch on which I’ve been riffing in this post is an excellent example of one they did better on record (the Matching Tie and Handkerchief Album, if I recall correctly) than on tee-vee.  That’s an endlessly fascinating topic of conversation in and of itself – which sketches worked best in which mediums and why.

Well I’m fascinated by it.  And remember, if you enjoy the topic half as much as I do, then I enjoy it twice as much as you.  Ha, ha!

[Ed. – Cue the 16-ton weight!])


Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Ol’ Robbo noted this comment from the Puppy-Blender in the light of all the Face Book privacy violation crap that’s suddenly (yet not surprisingly) surfacing:

I hope a lot of people will move back to blogs and away from big corporate platforms. As I wrote a while back: “I think that the old blogosphere was superior to ‘social media’ like Twitter and Facebook for a number of reasons. First, as a loosely-coupled system, instead of the tightly-coupled systems built by retweets and shares, it was less prone to cascading failure in the form of waves of hysteria. Second, because there was no central point of control, there was no way to ban people. And you didn’t need one, since bloggers had only the audience that deliberately chose to visit their blogs.”

Maybe I should start featuring people who move back to blogs.

Yeah, that would be really nice.  (And can I just note that I’ve been blogging for fifteen years now and although the old Llama Butchers got Insta-lanched a couple times, none of them were actually my posts?  Can ya’ help a retro-buddy out?  Just saying…….)

I still remember those days and the great satisfaction I derived in putting together (well, helping to at any rate) a decent blog and then gradually building up our own unique network of friends and gunnegshuns.  Back then, it felt more like a spirited conversation, free from any sense of restraint by The Man.

Now, I feel I’m more or less mumbling at the clouds, largely because most of the old bloggers I knew have either dropped out of social media altogether or else have gone over to Face Book.

(I’ve got an FB account myself, but I try to keep what I say there rigidly separated from my meanderings here.  And at least on my “personal” page, I’m pretty much reduced to “liking” things like my niece’s prom photos.  The only response I dare there to outbursts of SJW nonsense is to quietly “mute” whoever puts up the post.)

Here’s hoping the exposure of the ugly face of Big Social Media brings about a return to those better times.

___ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ___

Totally off-topic, I was out a little while ago inspecting the Port Swiller Manor driveway to gage what kind of icing I’m likely to have to deal with tomorrow morning when this puddle image caught my eye:

Single candles, don’t you know.  I thought it was neat enough to capture on my phone and share.  Enjoy!

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Without looking it up, I believe it was Chesterton who said something to the effect that insanity could be defined as repeatedly doing exactly the same thing but expecting different results.  Ol’ Robbo found himself thinking about this as he watched “Red Tails” on cable last evening.  It’s one of those movies I’ll generally stop on if I’m flipping through the teevee channels and can’t find anything else.

Somehow, each time I find myself hoping it’s better than I remember it being.  After all, the exploits of the Tuskegee Airmen in WWII are a noble and uplifting subject.  And yet, every time I’m  disappointed anew.  The movie is just plain bad: cardboard characters, completely predictable and clichéd dialogue, and CGI Mustangs doing unpossible things.

A pity.

But maybe…just maybe….next time…….

Anyhoo a few notes on some other historickal movies that have come through my Netflix queue of late:

Drums Along the Mohawk” (1939)- Upstate New York settlers fighting off the Iroquois during the Revolutionary War.  It’s funny: I’ve seen this film probably three or four times, but couldn’t remember a single thing about it from previous viewings.  This time around I decided I really don’t care for it very much, despite the presence of the lovely and talented Claudette Colbert.  Too much “Ye Olde” about it, I guess.  Also, I’ve decided once and for all that the only costume genre Henry Fonda had any business being in was Westerns.  (I was reminded of his role as Pierre in that bizarre adaptation of “War and Peace“.  In speaking of Napoleon’s armies, even all dolled up as a Russian noble, he may as well have been talking of the Comanche.)

The Howards of Virginia” (1940) – Now this one was new to me and I actually quite liked it.  Another Revolutionary War film in which young up-and-coming frontiersman Cary Grant plucks Martha Scott out of Tidewater Society (under her brother Cedric Hardwicke’s nose) and builds her an estate out in the Shenandoah.  As the political situation collapses, trouble ensues.  It seemed Grant couldn’t decide whether to stick with an Irish accent or not, but otherwise I thought it a good story well acted.  (A lot of the exteriors were filmed at Colonial Williamsburg not long after it had been rescued and refurbished.)

Beau Geste” (1939)- With Gary Cooper in the title role.  I’ve been wanting to see this for years, and it was well worth it.  P.C. Wren’s convoluted story-lines and rich dialogue could never be completely replicated on the screen, but I thought the movie did a fine job in presenting the story.  (And on that front, I’ve now really got to track down “The Desert Song” and watch it.)

Ivanhoe” (1952)- The tale of knightly strife between Saxons and Normans under Wicked King John.  A pretty good  chain-mail story (although I confess I haven’t read Scott in years and years).  And how’d you like to be Robert Taylor  with a young Elizabeth Taylor and Joan Fontaine fighting over you!  Tough life, eh?  This film reminded me that I want to go back and have a look at the Anthony Andrews tee-vee version, which I haven’t seen in 35-odd years but have a vague recollection was pretty well done, too.

Caesar and Cleopatra” (1945) – I’ll tell you truly, friends – Ol’ Robbo could watch Claude Rains all day and every day.  And even though Vivian Leigh was quite off her rocker, she’s still mighty easy on the eyes.  (OTOH, I am now firmly convinced that Stewart Granger was nothing more than beefcake.  Even when playing the large-living Apollodorus, he couldn’t really act that much.)  Finally, while there are many things about Mr. G.B. Shaw which Ol’ Robbo finds objectionable, I will give it to the man that he wielded a mighty witty pen.

Oh, I’m also reminded that yesterday was the anniversary of the fall of the Alamo.  Maybe I missed it, but I haven’t noticed either of the major screen treatments running on cable this week.  (Perhaps they did when we were without power over the weekend.)  I haven’t seen the John Wayne version in years and need to toss it in the queue.  Of course, that was mostly the Dook being the Dook, but is that such a bad thing?  Some time fairly recently I also actually tried the 2004 version and was pleasantly surprised in that it wasn’t half as awful as I dreaded: I doubt seriously whether there was much room for Billy Bob Thornton’s ironic self-awareness on the frontier in 1836, but otherwise I thought it was a reasonably fair treatment.  (And yes, the real Col. Travis was something of a preening twit.)

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Well, the new trailer for The Incredibles 2 floated across Ol’ Robbo’s FB page yesterday.  It seems to me outright silly to waste too much psychic energy on a mere movie, but I have to confess that I have felt a keen sense of apprehension about this one ever since rumors of it first surfaced some years ago.

This is because the original is by far Ol’ Robbo’s favorite Pixar movie, and is indeed one of his favorite movies full stop. Technically – story, dialogue, animation, music, etc. -it’s so very well done and sets such an incredibly (ha!) high bar, that I just don’t see how that can be repeated, much less surpassed.

My other, deeper, worry concerns what might be called the general tone of the thing.  The first movie was pretty solidly conservative and took a lot of swings (some subtle, some blunt) at political correctness.  That was fourteen years ago, and “P.C.” has morphed since then into the much more radical and poisonous “SJW”.  Will the new one have the courage to maintain the spirit of its predecessor?  Or will it crumble?  (I gather that the plot has something to do with Mr. Incredible becoming a stay-at-home dad while Elastigirl fights crime with Grrrrrl-power.  There may turn out to be a perfectly good plot reason for this, but on the surface it sure as heck looks like possible pandering to me.)

I do not trust Disney any farther than I could throw a dead Rodent of Unusual Size.

We shall see, I suppose.

I’m Robbo the Port Swiller and I approve this painting.

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Friends of the decanter no doubt read the story this week about the kerfluffle over the Manchester Art Gallery temporarily removing John William Waterhouse’s “Hylas and the Nymphs” from display?  (Apparently, it’s back up now.)

It is a painting that shows pubescent, naked nymphs tempting a handsome young man to his doom, but is it an erotic Victorian fantasy too far, and one which, in the current climate, is unsuitable and offensive to modern audiences?

Manchester Art Gallery has asked the question after removing John William Waterhouse’s Hylas and the Nymphs, one of the most recognisable of the pre-Raphaelite paintings, from its walls. Postcards of the painting will be removed from sale in the shop.

The painting was taken down on Friday and replaced with a notice explaining that a temporary space had been left “to prompt conversations about how we display and interpret artworks in Manchester’s public collection”.

Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute!  I thought that the purpose of art nowadays is to be “unsuitable and offensive”! I thought such untouchable examples of artistic expression such as the “Piss Christ”, that Madonna made of elephant dung, and the photography of Robert Maplethorpe were supposed to shake us stuffy, close-minded bourgeois mouth-breathers out of our comfort zones.   Double-standard we much?

But then, of course, consistency is not a hobgoblin with which Cultural Marxism concerns itself very much.  Power first.  Principles later.

The article is from the Guardian,  which seems to take the line that summarily disappearing a piece of art is not censorship, because in a museum, for example, things get switched in and out all the time for a lot of different reasons.  Well that may be true, but if you’re saying you’re removing it because it might be too offensive, then yeah, you’re censoring it.  (Speaking of which, I see where a school district in Minnesota is yanking Huckleberry Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird from its reading list because of badspeak.  What the heck happened to the principled liberals like Nat Hentoff who used to speak out against this sort of nonsense? Off the top of my head, Camille Paglia is about the only one who still puts up a fight.)

By the bye, in Ol’ Robbo’s experience, language such as “to prompt conversations about how we display and interpret artwork”  when used by Leftists invariably translates into “shut up and get in line, kulak”.

Of course, if the Manchester Gallery decide in good conscience that they simply can’t keep this Waterhouse, Ol’ Robbo would be perfectly happy to take it off their hands.

UPDATE:  The lovely and talented Mary Katharine Ham takes many of Ol’ Robbo’s points about both the Manchester flap and the Minnesota book-banning, and turns them into a battle-cry.  Mmmmm…..MKH mentioned the old Llama Butchers by name in a video back in the day (which I couldn’t possibly find now).  Nice that she’s evidently paying attention to Ol’ Robbo even after all this time.  A glass of Madeira, M’dear?

Her greater point, which I think is an important one, is that when people actually push back against this web of unreality, it buckles, since it is built on a web of fantasy and lies.

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Well, it’s been quite a week at Port Swiller Manor.  The Younger Gels got involved in a fender-bender Tuesday morning (not their fault, just a squished rear bumper, no injuries), and then Mrs. Robbo’s 94 y.o. grandmother passed away earlier today.  As Mrs. R has been in Flarduh for nearly a week tending said grandmother, Ol’ Robbo has been handling all the fall-out of both events this end by himself.

Nonetheless, in between bouts of having to do Grown Up stuff, I’ve managed to squeeze in four movies since last weekend, none of which I’ve actually seen before.  So a few quick thoughts on each:

Cheyenne Autumn (1964).  John Ford’s last western.  A band of Cheyenne on a reservation in Oklahoma, tired of being shafted by the Gubmint, decides to go home to Wyoming.  The Army, naturally, pursues them.  This isn’t your usual frontier struggle set-up.  Instead, it’s a look at very shabby treatment of a beaten people, and could have been a very good movie due to its thought-provoking themes and its excellent cavalry scenes,  but for a couple of things.  First, there is a middle part in which the good citizens of Dodge City, Kansas, led by Jimmah Stewart as Wyatt Earp, panic because they think the Cheyennes are coming for them.  The bit is something near Olde West parody and really ruins the tone.  Second, although the action is supposed to take place in Oklahoma, Kansas, and Wyoming, a lot of the film was shot in Monument Valley which, although beautiful in its own right, looks nothing like any of those locations.  Very annoying to me.  Ricardo Montalban is the Cheyenne war chief.  Richard Widmark is the sympathetic cavalry officer who has to chase him.  Karl Malden, sporting a German accent, is another army officer in on the hunt. Edward G. Robinson, with no trace of gangster about him, is the sympathetic Secretary of the Interior.  And a lovely young Carrol Baker plays a Quaker missionary at the reservation. (I find, upon looking her up, that she played the mother of the psychopath in Kindergarten Cop.)  I’d give it two and a half out of five glasses – definitely worth seeing, but probably not a repeater.

Flight of the Phoenix (1965).  This movie had sat in my Netflix back-order queue for years, but TCM ran it the other night.  A cargo plane, piloted by Jimmah Stewart and Dickie Attenborough and carrying a dozen or so soldiers and oil-field employees, goes down in the Sahara.  There’s minimal food and water, and no hope of being spotted, so the survivors have to think of a way to get themselves out.  It’s basically one of your disparate personalities meets impossible situation dramas.  I must say, without spoilers, that I thought their Kobyashi Maru solution to be a bit…far-fetched, but, hey, this is the movies.  Ernest Borgnine and George Kennedy are among the crew.  I’ll go three out of five glasses on this one, too.  I’m taking it out of my Netflix queue, but this is the sort of movie that I’d watch any time it happened to come up on cable.

Cromwell (1970).  No, I really hadn’t seen it before.  This is an excellent film.  I mean, Richard Harris (as Cromwell) and Alec Guinness (as Charles I), for crying out loud.  The battle scenes between Roundheads and Cavaliers were really outstanding, I thought, courtesy, as I understand it, of the Spanish Army extras.  Historickally speaking, I thought the film somewhat more sympathetic to Cromwell than it could have been, although since it cuts out before he assumes dictatorial control, a lot of his, ah, heavy-handedness is excluded.  Timothy Dalton, of all people, plays Prince Rupert, which makes you realize just how long he’s been around the films.  Five glasses on this one – I’ll toss it back in the queue again for future viewing.

Demetrius and the Gladiators (1954).  Insert your “Joey, do you like movies about……?” snark here.  This is actually a sequel to the movie, The Robe, in which moody, broody Richard Burton’s Roman officer comes into possession of Christ’s robe after the Crucifixion.  In that film, Burton moodily, broodily is transformed by said Robe and all that it represents, and then is moodily, broodily sent off to his martyrdom for his new-found Faith.  D and the G picks it up at this point.  As Burton moodily, broodily marches off to his death, he gives the Robe to St. Peter, who apparently has no trouble standing about in Caligula’s audience chamber.  Peter then has to leave town on business, so he entrusts the Robe to Victor Mature’s Demetrius.  Demetrius subsequently gets in trouble with the Law and is hauled off to gladiator school.  Meanwhile, Caligula gets it in his head that the Robe has some magical power of divinity and sets out to find it.  At the same time, Messalina (played by yummy Susan Heyward) gets the hots for Demetrius.  Crises of Faith and pagan debauchery ensue, and only come to a close when St. Peter reappears to snap Demetrius back in line and Caligula is assassinated.  The Julio-Claudian history is…..loosely presented, at best.  Eh, I’ll give this one two glasses out of five.  For all the Christian themes at work, it really is just a movie about gladiators.

UPDATE:  Add Comanche Station (1960).  Randolph Scott rescues a comely young woman from the Comanch and then has to battle both Indians and Claude Akins to get her back to her husband.  (The young lady seems to fall into a suspicious number of creeks, ponds, and water troughs.  Just saying.)

The whole time, I kept thinking of this:

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Last evening Ol’ Robbo caught most of Chimes at Midnight over on TCM, which I’ve never seen before.  Orson Welles basically lifts all the Prince Hal/Sir John Falstaff bits out of Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2.  It’s actually a pretty good film, even though the sound quality was such that half the lines were less than intelligible.  Welles makes quite the credible Falstaff, although since he’s playing a drunken old letch, it really wasn’t much of a stretch for him.  John Gielgud, who I’d watch in anything, was satisfying as Henry IV.  And there were plenty of familiar faces among the secondary characters.  Perhaps my very favorite geek moment was realizing that Andrew Faulds, who played Westmorland, was the Roman officer who brought back the runaway Pseudolus to the house of Senex early on in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum.  “Citizens! We caught your runaway slave, and now he dares challenge our right to execute him!”  (When I watch movies, I like to point these sorts of things out.  Mrs. R cannot stand this practice. We don’t watch many movies together anymore.)

I may have to toss this one in the Nexflix queue and take another look.

And speaking of said queue, up this evening is The Return of the Pink Panther, which I haven’t seen in years.  Another of those movies that couldn’t possibly be made today. (“CATO!”)  Be back later……

UPDATE: What fun! I don’t think I’d seen it since I was a teenager, but somehow I remembered all the sight-gags and prat-falls perfectly.  And Herbert Lom really should have been arrested for being that slyly funny.

You know one thing I dislike about The Pink Panther? The theme musick.  And I’ll tell you why: That theme is a favorite of piano teachers to use on beginner students, especially the youngest.  I suppose the reasoning is that it is an easily-recognizable and popular tune, and that this will encourage the little darlin’s to practice.  In any event, I’ve been forced to endure it many, many times at recitals.  And every time, the kiddies make the same damned mistake – they go blazing through the first line of the melody and then crash and burn on the first chord progression in the left hand.

Every. Damn. Time.

After awhile, it’s enough to make you start twitching like Chief Inspector Dreyfus.

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Ol’ Robbo got detoured by the po-po as he made his way home this evening and had to navigate through several neighborhoods to get back to a main artery.

I may be completely delusional in this, but it seems to me that many more people are keeping their outdoor Christmas (excuse me, Holiday) light displays out later this year.  I’d like to think it has something to do with a heightened spirit of the season, but the skeptic in me suggests that it probably has more to do with the deep freeze that blanketed the area for the past couple weeks keeping folks indoors.

Heigh ho.

Speaking of such things, Ol’ Robbo took down the Port Swiller Christmas tree last weekend after Epiphany.  I’m happy to report that there were no successful ornament suicides this year, although I caught several of them lurking deep within the bows round back, just waiting for the opportunity to hurl themselves to the floor.

As is my wont, once I had stripped it, I hauled the tree round back and tossed it on the brush heap within the verges of the wood outside my back gate.  Interesting observation: It seems to take a fir about two years to fully decompose.  I tossed this one next to the brown and needleless hulk from last year.  The one from the year prior to that has completely vanished.

So long as it doesn’t go up too early, Ol’ Robbo doesn’t really care that much when the Christmas tree comes down.  On the other hand, I am delighted that this year Mrs. Robbo has agreed to let me keep my wreaths (front door and dining room table) and my new crèche out until Candlemas, (February 2nd).

(Also, although she doesn’t know it, I chalked the front door of Port Swiller Manor with Epiphany chalk this year.  20 + C + M + B + 18.  One of Ol’ Robbo’s goals this year is to quietly insert more and more of these little sacramentals into the daily routine of Port Swiller Manor.  I figure it will soften the blow when I eventually pull down on Mrs. R and start advocating for a Crucifix in the front hall.)

Oh, and continuing with this general line of thought, a glass of wine with staunch friend of the decanter Old Dominion Tory, who recently sent Ol’ Robbo a couple of CD’s of Medieval Christmas Musick.  Since I’m going hard-core this year, they’re still perfectly seasonal and appropriate for the next few weeks!

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Possessed by some sudden onset of nostalgia, several months ago Ol’ Robbo tossed “Battlestar Galactica” into his Netflix queue.  Yes, I mean the real one. **

As a 13-year old kid when it came out, Ol’ Robbo loved this show.  I had models of a Colonial Viper and a Cylon Raider.  I had the soundtrack album.  I had a book version of the first episode that was basically a storyboard, combining stills from the show with printed dialogue.  I longed to possess one of those Colonial Warrior jackets.  Yeah, I was a nerd back then.

Now, I was curious to see what I thought of it, er, 40 years later.

Before I get into my thoughts, though, let me just get out of the way something I’m sure some friend of the decanter will bring up immediately: Boxy and his robot daggit.  This biznay wasn’t really defensible back then, and it isn’t defensible now.  I’ll give you that one, okay?

That said, I’m happy to say that I watched the first, extended episode last evening and was really quite pleased with how it held up.  The dialogue was tight and to the point, the special effects were pretty much as I remembered them. (Dykstra-vision originally pioneered for the Star Wars movies – I recall reading somewhere that BSG had an enormous special effects budget for a tee-vee series, which is probably why they had to recycle so many of the exterior shots over and over again.  I didn’t much mind when I was a kid, and it really doesn’t bother me now.)  And I loved the wave of nostalgia.  As originally conceived, the Cylons were a stand-in for the Soviet Juggernaut so ominous during the height of the Carter Malaise.  They didn’t get you through cunning or superior skills, they got you through relentless drive, overwhelming numbers, and exploitation of your own softness and self-doubt.  Clear-minded, freedom-loving individuals could fight them off, even in the most dire circumstances.

Then, of course, there was the question perhaps upmost on 13 y.o. Robbo’s mind:  The lovely and talented Maren Jensen?  Or the lovely and talented Jane Seymour?  Whelp, I believed then and I still believe today that if I had to flee the Cylon tyranny with one lovely lady, I’d go with Lt. Athena over Serina.  (Laurette Spang’s Cassiopeia and Anne Lockhart’s Lt. Sheba would battle it out for a distant third.)

So I’m looking forward to re-watching the rest of the original series.  (We will say nothing of the 1980 redux.)  I don’t remember much about it, except that there were a number of “guest” stars that included (I think) Fred Astaire as Starbuck’s shifty grifter father and Lloyd Bridges as the “legendary” Commander Cain.  I’m sure it will all come back to me, though.

And speaking of which, I am reminded again of the very amusing little bit from the later “A-Team” opening credits featuring Dirk Benedict (the real Starbuck, dammit) and an old nemesis:

Never gets old.

** Ol’ Robbo tried to watch the new version when it came out in the early 2000’s and hated it.  Dark.  Edgy.  And a camera that couldn’t sit still for two seconds on end.  Plus, if I understand correctly, it turned out in the end that all of the Colonial survivors were just Cylon fifth columnists themselves.  So, feh.

Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Whelp, this will most likely be Ol’ Robbo’s last post of 2017.  Those regular friends of the decanter will need no explanation, I think, when I simply say “Goodbye To All That”.  A few things to get us over the hump:

♦  Ol’ Robbo watched the Cary Grant/Myrna Loy comedy “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House” last evening.  I’d seen it once before years ago and thought it “meh”.  I thought it far funnier this time around, perhaps because I’ve been through several home remodeling/updating projects since then.

♦  Speaking of the joys of home ownership, we discovered this afternoon that Port Swiller Manor has been receiving free garbage pickup for the last six years.  Evidently, the company with which we originally signed up got taken over by a competitor and our account got lost in the transfer.  We simply didn’t notice because the trash continued to get picked up all that time anyway, and it was only after inquiry as to why our cans were ignored yesterday that we discovered the glitch.  To their credit, the (not so) new company admitted the error was theirs and will not charge us retroactively (not that we would have paid it, of course).

♦  Speaking of the past, this evening Ol’ Robbo finished up the novel The Horse Soldiers by Harold Sinclair.  As I’ve mentioned here previously, it is a fictionalized account of Grierson’s Raid during the Civil War, and is also the book on which the John Ford/John Wayne movie of the same name is based.  I will say that the movie, of which I am quite fond, is (surprise, surprise) only very loosely based on the book (and, I suppose, on the actual historickal facts).

Overall, I think the book is worth a read if you’re a Civil War buff, especially in its details of brigade, regiment, and smaller unit tactical considerations.

♦  Dayum, it’s cold outside!  Personally, I blame ManBearPig.  I’m super serial, y’all.

♦  I can tell you all that I give not a pair of fetid dingo’s kidneys about the latest Star Wars installment, because the whole franchise descended into silliness a long time ago.  On the other hand, I am in dread of the evidently impending release of The Incredibles 2.  How do you top the first one for story-telling?  And even more importantly, how do you sustain the traditionalist values of the first in this day and age of cultural Marxist blitzkrieg?  My fear is that the sequel will not even attempt to resist, but instead will succumb passively to the P.C. Anschluss.

God send that I am pleasantly surprised….

Well, enough for now.  As I say, I’ll be back on the other side of the hump.  Don’t stay up too late on New Year’s Eve (I certainly won’t, if I can at all help it) and I’ll see you in 2018!




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