Steal This Thought: NES Cart to MIDI Pan Flute

So. In the course of getting hopelessly lost on wikipedia’s Esotericism category, I got thinking about what superstitious beliefs I hold or held when I was younger. Specifically, what suburban folk wisdom got chucked around before the advent of the internet and we all became part of the same hive mind of captioned photos and bad advice. That is, what was my natural religious practice before I started worshipping the Intertubes? Like you, I spent a lot of time blowing into Nintendo cartridges when the damn things stopped working. We weren’t sure exactly why (invisible dust?) but somehow if you blew on the cart right or you blew in the slot right, you fixed the game and got to play. There’s an obvious sexual metaphor here but that’s not where my mind wandered to. Instead I started thinking about how cool it would be if all that blowing actually did […]

I therefore pronounce him a Coward and a Scoundrel

This photo made my day when it arrived in my inbox. I don’t know who snapped it but I figured there had to be a story. And there is. William Tradewell, the man who declared General Leigh Read a “Coward and Scoundrel” was a member of the America conservative Whig party and slave owner in the Old South. General Leigh Read was a rising star in the Democrat party whose political naivety  cost him. Tradewell requested a duel with Read because of Read’s refusal to “apologise for the insult offered” and the feud between Tradewell and Read’s respective political parties. Read, being a poor shot turned him down. Another guy by the name of Augustus Alston also offered Read a duel (but no public notice on his ’scoundrelness.’) Read accepted knowing he was going up against a man who was a good shot, wealthy, from a nepotistic family, and vehemently opposed the […]