Archive - 2004

November 25th

The first Thanksgiving

Here is an extremely interesting article in the New York Times about depictions of the first Thanksgiving in the history books. This is history at its most interesting.

November 23rd

Crossing things off the list

Today was a good day. Cold but clear. Plenty to do. I made a list in the morning and spent the day crossing things off the list. I did what one is supposed to do but seldom does: attack the least desirable task first and the next least desirable task after that. Boy, does that make one feel good.

November 22nd

More pictures

I find myself nostalgic for Arizona, especially knowing I probably won't get there this winter. Here is a picture of a pottery store in Tubac, AZ. I believe Tubac is at about 5,000 feet elevation. The colors are more vivid at that elevation, it seems.

Winter's slow arrival

It gets a little colder each day, yet it is still surprisingly bearable. We can't complain--no snowfall yet, and we're nearly to Thanksgiving. Some is predicted for tonight, but I am betting against it.

I sure like my gas fireplace this time of year. It toastens the room up real nice when the wind howls outside.

November 20th

Memories of summer

Here is a picture of my favorite summer phenomenon: A thundercloud heading to the east late in the evening after passing overhead. This picture was taken at Lakeview Resort on Maple Lake last July.

A fun day of teaching

Yesterday was a fun day in the classroom. Odd, you just can't predict when lectures will go well and when they will flop. I felt blase going into the day, and then things just worked out. The students were in a pretty peppy mood, for the most part.

We started the Civil War in American History with the first shots at Ft. Sumter. It helped that I pulled some books off the shelf and read up on some of the more interesting details. The textbooks, with their one-paragraph-per-major-event approach miss all the interesting stories.

November 18th

The last day in paradise?

The weather is threatening to turn tomorrow--but today was perfection. I went to town about sunset and snapped some pictures, including this one of the drugstore building's brick facade.

I don't know if this building was built with Fertile bricks or not. For those of you not familiar with the history of Fertile, the town used to have a brickyard. In fact, the great-grandfather of my carpenters, the Kronschnabels, founded it.

November 16th

Golden Gate

Here is today's photo: A picture of the Golden Gate Bridge taken last January. Greg, a buddy from the baseball trip a summer ago, spent a day giving me a tour of the Bay area. This picture was taken from Golden Gate Park, a former military outpost.

Ghengis Khan

In World Civilization class, we are studying Ghenghis Khan tomorrow. He perfected a nasty form of warfare which killed millions in the territories he conquered from the Black Sea to Korea.

The Khans captured China. During the time of Mongol rule, China's population was cut in half. Entire ethnic groups were completely wiped out by the Khans. The Mongols built enormous pyramids out of their victim's heads.

I had not known the extent of their butchery.

Civil War

For all the reading I have done about the Civil War in the past few years, when it comes time now to teach it to my American History class, I am somewhat at a loss. The first chapter on the Civil War--which I just read in 25 minutes--covers material which takes 300 pages in most books on the topic.