Tuesday, February 6, 2018
Interesting days recently.
On Sunday morning (4th) Joe and I had our usual brunch. Joe was in a mood for Maccas so we went there and took our purchases to the Kangaroo Pt cliffs to eat. It is very scenic there. I had some sort of breakfast burger that was quite good plus a big chocolate shake. One of the things Joe had was a serve of hotcakes.
Then on the evening of the same day, I hosted a small dinner dedicated to men's talk. Joe could not come as his cat had just got sick so he had to go to the vet. But Christopher and Graham were there. Graham brought along a couple of 19th century British cavalry sabres for display. I have now asked him to get one for me too. They were a remarkably fine piece of work considering when they were made. Chris brought along sidearms: A replica Colt 45 American army revolver of the 19th century plus a German Luger pistol. I could see how the Luger "points well", helping you to hit your tahget.
Mostly however we just talked, covering a very wide range of topics. I explained the sequence of events plus the psychological motivation behind WWI. We got onto the Battle of Jutland, which is a particular interest of mine. I pointed out that Admiral Scheer ran rings around admiral Jellicoe. And it turned out that Graham had an ancestor on one of the ships that the Kaiserliche Marine sank. We also touched briefly on the Crimean war and the battle of Hastings in 1066.
I noted that our ancestors originally came from the South Baltic shores but something happened that made them want to find greener fields -- crop failures due to global cooling probably. Anyway some drove South and some got into boats and drove West -- creating Saxony and England respectivelly. Saxony is a very choice part of the German lands so it is clear that the Saxons were good warriors who won their battles. And in both places where they made their new settlements there were already other people there -- Celts. So the people of both Saxony and England today are a blend of Saxons and Celts. When the Celts lost a battle to the Saxons, you can guess what happened to the Celtic women.
And I pointed out that the Celts in our ancestry really were one ethnic group. Since all the surving Celtic groups in Western Europe speak similar languages -- Welsh, Irish, Cornish, Manx, Breton, Scots Gaelic -- that is very clear. Other European groups called Celts may however be unrelated. "Celt" is from "keltoi", the Greek word for "foreigner". We also have Caesar's report in de bello gallico that the Gauls and the British were the one race and respected one-another's priests (Druids).
Christopher was particularly taken with Breton folk-music and noted that it was the theme music to the “Black Hawk down” movie
So those of us with Celtic ancestry have a wide range of cultures to make our own. I believe that the Breton folk scene is particularly lively -- and it is ours if we want it.
We also talked quite a bit about old motorbikes, particularly remembering our surprise when the Honda Dream first came out. It upset lots of our conceptions of what motorbikes were like.
We aso noted with approval the ideas of psychologist Jordan Peterson and wondered if he might become a major change agent.
So in discussing men's topics a good time was had by all.
Graham and I next day had a rather traditional brekkie of savoury mince on toast at my place and Graham left shortly afterward to catch his plane back to Melbourne