Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, May 22, 2019

  • WifeGeeding should totally do this with her extra eyes. A bit of background on this ring:
    • @drlindseyfitzharrisThis Victorian mourning ring from the late 19th century was made from the deceased person’s glass eye. Would you wear something like this? The first in-socket artificial eyes made in the 15th century were gold with colored enamel. In the latter part of the 16th century, the Venetian glass artisans discovered a formula that could be tolerated inside the eye socket. These early glass eyes were crude, uncomfortable to wear, and very fragile. Even so, the Venetian method was considered the finest in the world. In the mid-19th century, glass artisans in Thuringia, a region in eastern Germany, developed a superior glass formula for the making of artificial eyes. Glass eye making was introduced in the United States in the mid-1800s by immigrant German ocularists. In the 1940s, glass was replaced by plastics, which were more comfortable for the wearer and lasted longer.
  • I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (it’s the perks of having your own blog). I want WifeGeeding to give her prosthetic eyes to our kids just so I can say, “They have their mother’s eyes.”
  • New Coke Comeback – I recall it being very sweet, almost Pepsi like – Coca-Cola is bringing back New Coke in honor of ‘Stranger Things’
  • I was researching the funeral of Alexander Hamilton and learned of his best friend and overlooked Founding Father, Gouverneur Morris (he wrote the Preamble of the Constitution), who was at his side when he expired. After reading this old article about him from The New York Post (founded by Hamilton, btw), I think he’s a friend we all hope to have. Here are a collection of things about Morris, Hamilton’s death and funeral, and their friendship I’d like to share with you. Please don’t let your judgment of Morris be swayed by the small yet overlooked fact he died from internal injuries and infection caused to himself by using a piece of whalebone as a catheter in an attempt to clear a blockage in his urinary tract.
    • Hamilton reportedly offered to throw a dinner party for Morris if he would go up to Washington at a public reception and slap him chummily on the back. Morris did and got his dinner party, though he supposedly said that the frown Washington gave him was the worst moment of his life.
    • As Hamilton lay dying, his wife, Eliza, asked Morris to “join her in prayers for her own death, and then to be a father for her children.” I believe seven of their children were alive at this time ranging in ages from six to sixteen.
    • Morris delivered the eulogy, but these particular acts stood out. He really took care of his best friend’s family.
      • He organized a secret subscription among Hamilton’s friends to pay off his debts and support his family. He also helped organize Hamilton’s papers, which had been left in “wretched disorder.”
    • Hamilton’s funeral was more ornate, more pomp and circumstance than I originally thought. Here’s a writeup of the funeral and the eulogy Morris gave as it was published in 1804. I like the writer’s attempt to write it sincerely and as it happened so future generations can take it in.
      • On Saturday last the remains of Alexander Hamilton were committed to the grave with every possible testimony of respect and sorrow. That distant readers may form some idea of what passed on this mournful occasion, we shall here present them with a regular and correct account of the whole scene.
      • On the stage erected in the portico of Trinity Church, Mr. Gouverneur Morris, having four of General Hamilton’s sons, the eldest about sixteen and the youngest about six years of age, with him, rose and delivered to the immense concourse in front an extemporary Oration, which, being pronounced slowly and impressively, was easily committed to memory, and being very soon afterwards placed on paper, is presumed to be correct even to the language. Being shown to several gentlemen who heard it, they all agree that it comes near enough to what was actually delivered to be presented as that oration at length.
  • Yesterday, LiberallyLean referenced the most recent passing rates for the California Bar Exam, that they are the second-worst passing rate in 30 years at 31.4%. I’m not trying to be critical of his observation (he’s a professional in the field and I just watch a few law shows on the TV); however, earlier this year I heard one of the Kardashian girls planned on taking the California Bar Exam and it was mentioned that California is only one of four states in which you can take the bar without attending law school, the others being Virginia, Vermont, and Washington. I wonder how much a factor that is regarding the passing rates. The source I provided also states from 1995-2014 California was the hardest bar exam to pass, Texas was twenty-second.
  • For my fellow fans of ‘This Old House’ (though I prefer ‘Ask This Old House’) – The Rare Home-Improvement Show That Spotlights Skilled WorkersIn 40 years on air, PBS’s This Old House inspired a more flashy genre of TV while giving tradespeople the attention they deserve.
  • An acquaintance at church recently had shoulder surgery and has been walking with his arm in a sling for the last several weeks and he still travels for work. Recently he was upgraded to a business travel seat, boarded the airplane, but was having a little trouble placing his laptop bag in the overhead bin. He is also vertically challenged. After a moment or two, Jessica Nowitzki stands up and kindly placed the bag in the bin for him and let him know if he needed to get it down during the flight to simply let her know. As you might have guessed, Jessica is the wife of Dirk. Those Nowitskis are nice people. I’m impressed someone of their stature, wealth, and height (well, Dirk is at least 15-inches taller at seven feet tall) will still fly commercial. I would have liked to see how well he fits in a plane seat, even if it’s business class.
  • NachoAnalytics.com might just be a better name for a website than BagOfNothing.com – Game of Thrones Real-Time Web Analytics Dashboard [Live Data]
  • USPS self-driving mail trucks will haul mail between Phoenix and Dallas in five round trips as part of the government’s first major autonomous vehicle test
  • The Fraught Culture of Online MourningNowadays, we live online, and so we grieve here too. But there are limits to the comfort digital mourning can provide.
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3 Responses to Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, May 22, 2019

  1. Bryan B. says:

    I remember New Coke tasting a lot like Pepsi and I believe that was part of the goal of the new recipe. I also seem to remember that the gold and red can tab pulls came out with New Coke. You could collect tabs and exchange them for branded merchandise at JC Penney of all places.

    Fascinating Hamilton-alia. His grave at Trinity Church is a must-visit site on a NYC trip.

  2. Bryan B. says:

    Double post warning – I went to Wikipedia to refresh my memory on the history of New Coke and laughed out loud at this tidbit about the return of the old formula:

    “ABC News’ Peter Jennings interrupted General Hospital with a special bulletin to share the news with viewers.”

    • Geeding says:

      I wouldn’t have guessed that Peter Jennings would have done such a thing, and I totally forgot about the gold and red tabs – thanks for the trip down memory lane.

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