One of the downsides of having a body is that sometimes it goes awry. At this particular moment in space-time, my body has simultaneously gone awry in three or four different ways.
Thanks for paying attention to this space; seeing your likes and re-blogs has been gratifying. I’ll have more weirdness and history for you in the new year. In the meantime, here’s a hi-res picture of a Krispy Kreme chocolate-frosted donut with sprinkles.

One of the downsides of having a body is that sometimes it goes awry. At this particular moment in space-time, my body has simultaneously gone awry in three or four different ways.

Thanks for paying attention to this space; seeing your likes and re-blogs has been gratifying. I’ll have more weirdness and history for you in the new year. In the meantime, here’s a hi-res picture of a Krispy Kreme chocolate-frosted donut with sprinkles.


Due to its location as a railroad crossroads in the Appalachian mountains - where a talent for manufacturing alcoholic beverages is a long tradition, Johnson City was a stopover point and occasional hideout for some legendary gangsters most notably Al Capone. Located between Chicago and Miami, Johnson City was dubbed “Little Chicago” and the Montrose Court Apartment complex (constructed in 1922; destroyed by fire in 1928) was reputed to be the headquarters for Capone and his friends. The John Sevier Hotel (opened in 1924) also has been associated with organized crime figures, including Al Capone, but the Windsor Hotel (1909-1971) led the way as a reputed melting pot of various types of vice including activities not necessarily involving alcohol. Underground passage ways and “escape routes” referenced in many stories underneath Johnson City’s streets are primarily related to a series of water pumps and storage areas. Secret access points to former “speakeasy” locations have also been discovered in North Johnson City that were in use as late as the 1960s. Check out this news article of the 1929 speakeasy shakedown in Johnson City. For persons wishing home delivery, local taxi companies reportedly hauled more alcohol than passengers during the 1920s.
What proof is there that Johnson City is linked to Al Capone? Obviously Al Capone kept no diary so oral history is the primary source available with “Little Chicago” stories and folklore handed down for generations. Newspaper accounts during the 1920s support Johnson City’s reputation as a “wide-open city” with operating characteristics similar to Big Chicago. The range of allegations against the city’s police department and public officials in the time period January through March 1926 alone, is astounding. A series of local Chiefs of Police gave up trying to deal with the situation. Read carefully the Johnson City Staff-News editorial attesting to the local conditions and Editor Carroll King’s call for citizen support for the police force given the challenges at hand. In a follow-up editorial King proclaimed that Johnson City was under the thumb of hoodlums and undergoing a “reign of terror.” 
Bootlegging and moonshine adventures/wars were basically shrugged off as a fact of life and the local newspapers openly lampooned the jailbreaks and ease with which the alcohol runners avoided law enforcement. Nestled in the Blue Ridge mountains in the northeast corner of Tennessee - 30 miles from the Virginia State Line and 35 miles from the North Carolina State Line, Johnson City was ideally located for underground alcohol production and smuggling. The city grew to be Tennessee’s fifth largest city in the late 1920s. 
Telling proof also exists of Johnson City’s reputation relative to vice conditions nationally. In the February 26, 1952 issue of Look magazine, Johnson City was one of 25 cities listed as”a hotbed of vice conditions.” Knoxville and Chattanooga were listed in Tennessee as well, both of which were also major railroad junctions. For the record, Johnson City’s neighboring town of Bristol, Virginia received a “poor” rating. Ironically Bristol, Tennessee (the state line between Tennessee and Virginia divides the two towns) received a “good” rating as did Kingsport. The Johnson City Press-Chronicle responded to Look Magazine with this article.

Due to its location as a railroad crossroads in the Appalachian mountains - where a talent for manufacturing alcoholic beverages is a long tradition, Johnson City was a stopover point and occasional hideout for some legendary gangsters most notably Al Capone. Located between Chicago and Miami, Johnson City was dubbed “Little Chicago” and the Montrose Court Apartment complex (constructed in 1922; destroyed by fire in 1928) was reputed to be the headquarters for Capone and his friends. The John Sevier Hotel (opened in 1924) also has been associated with organized crime figures, including Al Capone, but the Windsor Hotel (1909-1971) led the way as a reputed melting pot of various types of vice including activities not necessarily involving alcohol. Underground passage ways and “escape routes” referenced in many stories underneath Johnson City’s streets are primarily related to a series of water pumps and storage areas. Secret access points to former “speakeasy” locations have also been discovered in North Johnson City that were in use as late as the 1960s. Check out this news article of the 1929 speakeasy shakedown in Johnson City. For persons wishing home delivery, local taxi companies reportedly hauled more alcohol than passengers during the 1920s.

What proof is there that Johnson City is linked to Al Capone? Obviously Al Capone kept no diary so oral history is the primary source available with “Little Chicago” stories and folklore handed down for generations. Newspaper accounts during the 1920s support Johnson City’s reputation as a “wide-open city” with operating characteristics similar to Big Chicago. The range of allegations against the city’s police department and public officials in the time period January through March 1926 alone, is astounding. A series of local Chiefs of Police gave up trying to deal with the situation. Read carefully the Johnson City Staff-News editorial attesting to the local conditions and Editor Carroll King’s call for citizen support for the police force given the challenges at hand. In a follow-up editorial King proclaimed that Johnson City was under the thumb of hoodlums and undergoing a “reign of terror.” 

Bootlegging and moonshine adventures/wars were basically shrugged off as a fact of life and the local newspapers openly lampooned the jailbreaks and ease with which the alcohol runners avoided law enforcement. Nestled in the Blue Ridge mountains in the northeast corner of Tennessee - 30 miles from the Virginia State Line and 35 miles from the North Carolina State Line, Johnson City was ideally located for underground alcohol production and smuggling. The city grew to be Tennessee’s fifth largest city in the late 1920s. 

Telling proof also exists of Johnson City’s reputation relative to vice conditions nationally. In the February 26, 1952 issue of Look magazine, Johnson City was one of 25 cities listed as”a hotbed of vice conditions.” Knoxville and Chattanooga were listed in Tennessee as well, both of which were also major railroad junctions. For the record, Johnson City’s neighboring town of Bristol, Virginia received a “poor” rating. Ironically Bristol, Tennessee (the state line between Tennessee and Virginia divides the two towns) received a “good” rating as did Kingsport. The Johnson City Press-Chronicle responded to Look Magazine with this article.

1 note

Pamphlets had been dropped informing the holdouts that the war was over and that they should surrender, but these requests were ignored. They lived a sparse life, eating coconuts, taro, wild sugar cane, fish and lizards. They smoked crushed, dried papaya leaves wrapped in the leaves of bananas and made an intoxicating beverage known as “tuba”, (coconut wine). They lived in palm frond huts with woven floor matting of pandanus. Their life improved after the crash of the aircraft . They used metal from the B-29 to fashion crude implements such as pots, knives and roofing for their hut. The oxygen tanks were used to store water, clothing was made from nylon parachutes, the cords used for fishing line. The springs from machine guns were fashioned into fish hooks. Several in the group also had machine guns and pistols recovered from the aircraft.

Personal aggravations developed as a result of being too long in close association within a small group on a small island and also because of tuba drinking. The presence of only one woman, Kazuko Higa, caused great difficulty as well. Six of eleven deaths that occurred among the holdouts were the result of violence. One man displayed thirteen knife wounds. Ms. Higa would, from time to time, transfer her affections between at least four of the men after each mysteriously disappeared as a result of “being swallowed by the waves while fishing.” In July 1950, Ms. Higa went to the beach when an American vessel appeared off shore and asked to be removed from the island. She was taken to Saipan aboard the Miss Susie and, upon arrival, informed authorities that the men on the island did not believe the war was over.

Meanwhile, officials of the Japanese government became interested in the situation on Anatahan and asked the Navy for information “concerning the doomed and living Robinson Crusoes who were living a primitive life on an uninhabited island”, and offered to send a ship to rescue them. The families of the Japanese holdouts on the island of Anatahan , were contacted in Japan and requested by the U. S. Navy to write letters advising them that the war was over and that they should surrender. In January 1951, a message from the Governor of Kanagawa Prefecture was delivered.

The letters were dropped by air on June 26 and finally convinced the holdouts that they should give themselves up. Thus, six years after the end of World War II, “Operation Removal” got underway from Saipan under the Command of James B. Johnson, USNR, aboard the Navy Tug USS Cocopa. Lt. Commander James B. Johnson and Mr. Ken Akatani, an interpreter, went ashore by rubber boat and formally accepted the last surrender of World War II on the morning of June 30, 1951 which also coincided with the last day of the Naval Administration of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.

"There are a lot of things I wish I would have done, instead of just sitting around and complaining about having a boring life." - Kurt Cobain (1967-1994)

"There are a lot of things I wish I would have done, instead of just sitting around and complaining about having a boring life." - Kurt Cobain (1967-1994)

7 notes

There has grown up in the minds of certain groups in this country the notion that because a man or corporation has made a profit out of the public for a number of years, the government and the courts are charged with the duty of guaranteeing such profit in the future, even in the face of changing circumstances and contrary to public interest. This strange doctrine is not supported by statute or common law. Neither individuals nor corporations have any right to come into court and ask that the clock of history be stopped, or turned back.
Life-Line by Robert A. Heinlein (1907-1988)

3 notes

"The glamorous future included no digital photography or stereo speakers tiny enough to fit in your ears. No forensic DNA testing or home pregnancy tests. No ubiquitous microwave ovens or video games or bar codes or laser levels or CGI-filled movies. No super absorbent polymers for disposable diapers — indeed, no disposable diapers of any kind.

Nor was much business innovation evident in those 20th century visions. The glamorous future included no FedEx or Wal-Mart, no Starbucks or Nike or Craigslist — culturally transformative enterprises that use technology but derive their real value from organization and insight. Nobody used shipping containers or optimized supply chains. The manufacturing revolution that began at Toyota never happened. And forget about such complex but quotidian inventions as wickable fabrics or salad in a bag.

The point isn’t that people in the past failed to predict all these innovations. It’s that people in the present take them for granted.”

If you haven’t got one, you’re going nowhere near my heating ducts.

If you haven’t got one, you’re going nowhere near my heating ducts.

3 notes

So much horror and SF history was in the hands of one man. No telling what will happen to it all.

(Source: youtube.com)

5 notes

Not every hero died, of course. (A) picture of Private Samuel Harvey VC “sharing a joke” with King George V, Queen Mary and other dignitaries was taken at a Buckingham Palace garden party in 1919 held for 300 soldiers who had won the Victoria Cross.
But in the air of 1914 there had been (for those with money, at least) a feverish romanticism , fuelled by many elements of Victorian life and culture. Overall it carried an invincible belief in the superiority of all things British; and an innocently misguided vision of war as a great and gallant knightly adventure.
Even by the end of the Great War, magazines and books still carried ludicrous pictures of cavalry charging into the enemy guns. And if war was a noble adventure, then those who died in its cause must be their very nature be noble.
In 1922 in England Today George A.Greenwood wrote: “About 11 per cent of the privates who were mobilised never returned; among the officers the proportion was about 22 per cent; and among the young subalterns the harvest of death was even greater still … They were of the stock of men with high desires that come from fresh brains and who have the energy to apply them, the elements that count for most in the world’s affairs. It is no mere coincidence that our almost intolerable weight of social, industrial and economic problems follows upon the sudden abstraction from and the very partial restoration to the life of its nation of its noblest, bravest and most unselfish youth.”
There was a burning need to find someone to blame, or at least find a reason for the mess the world was still in after the Great War. The post-war years were very difficult, rising prices and unemployment, the 1926 General Strike, all leading towards long-term recession.
- from “The Lost Generation: The Myth and The Reality,” Mike Roden

Not every hero died, of course. (A) picture of Private Samuel Harvey VC “sharing a joke” with King George V, Queen Mary and other dignitaries was taken at a Buckingham Palace garden party in 1919 held for 300 soldiers who had won the Victoria Cross.

But in the air of 1914 there had been (for those with money, at least) a feverish romanticism , fuelled by many elements of Victorian life and culture. Overall it carried an invincible belief in the superiority of all things British; and an innocently misguided vision of war as a great and gallant knightly adventure.

Even by the end of the Great War, magazines and books still carried ludicrous pictures of cavalry charging into the enemy guns. And if war was a noble adventure, then those who died in its cause must be their very nature be noble.

In 1922 in England Today George A.Greenwood wrote: “About 11 per cent of the privates who were mobilised never returned; among the officers the proportion was about 22 per cent; and among the young subalterns the harvest of death was even greater still … They were of the stock of men with high desires that come from fresh brains and who have the energy to apply them, the elements that count for most in the world’s affairs. It is no mere coincidence that our almost intolerable weight of social, industrial and economic problems follows upon the sudden abstraction from and the very partial restoration to the life of its nation of its noblest, bravest and most unselfish youth.”

There was a burning need to find someone to blame, or at least find a reason for the mess the world was still in after the Great War. The post-war years were very difficult, rising prices and unemployment, the 1926 General Strike, all leading towards long-term recession.

- from “The Lost Generation: The Myth and The Reality,” Mike Roden

3 notes

In Gilliam’s earliest, eighty-nine-page draft of the script, from the late ’70s, there are long, extraordinarily elaborate descriptions of the environment, and little dialogue (though in a few scenes there is dialogue that survives intact in the final film). Many of the salient plot points already exist, but the characters’ personalities differ markedly from those in the film. The protagonist, the office functionary Sam Lowry, is more of a milquetoast when it comes to making advances toward a beautiful woman, for example, yet keener to express anger (he easily lets his boss, Kurtzmann, have it with both barrels). And unlike the film’s Kurtzmann, who can’t help but reveal his ineffectualness and lack of authority to his underling, the draft’s head of records puts on a noisy show of power for his staff, and does not expose his weakness or seediness—to Sam or anyone. He is overbearing, belligerent, and quick to castigate Sam for being late twice in four years (rather than commiserating with him about faulty electricity, as in the film). Among ideas appearing this early in the script process that made it into the final version: the payment of interrogation charges by victims, the plastic smoothness of Dr. Jaffe’s skin, and Jill Layton’s work as a truck driver.

2 notes