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Posts Tagged ‘diary’

Historians Marvel at the Discovery of a 400-Year-Old “Helpmate’s” Diary

The Thames, they-are-a-changing.

While this startling discovery was not as crown-shattering as that of King Richard III’s bashed skull found beneath a Leicester parking lot in 2012, the unearthing of 23-year-old Mrs. Prudence Goodheart’s diary during excavations at a London Underground Station has antiquarians salivating in their spittoons. Written on durable vellum, the well-preserved journal was found buried in a sealed chamber pot at Charing Cross Station. The diary dates from 1600 and brims with keen insights into the grimy life and murky times of ante incendium London (before the Great Fire of London in 1665). I’ve taken the liberty of translating the journal from Ye Olde English into Ye New English and its archaic syntax has been updated to make it more readable. For example, Prudence’s antiquated entry of June 15th “With thine own beef I do reject thee” has been modernized to read “I think we should see other people.”

 

Mrs. Goodheart’s fascinating catalogue of ancient events arouses the imagination and plucks the mystic chords of memory as we survey her clogs-on-the-ground account of London’s early 17th century life. Those souls consigned to that period had to live this life. We pampered readers 400 years hence are privy to it like a fly on the wall; or perhaps more time-appropriately, like a louse on the scalp. The diary’s unique window on this hoary world animates the sights, smells and customs of the Olde World in ways that make one appreciate the abundant privilege of this age. With its unburnished, firsthand accounts, the journal captures the zeitgeist of the period. It then releases this zeitgeist on its own recognizance and parades it around for everyone to see and enjoy. Who doesn’t love a parade?

 

Do we identify with these historic events through some kind of morphic resonance drawn from the collective unconscious? Or is our interest more prosaic – a simple curiosity in old timey affairs told in the first person? The main take away at this point is that you’re still reading this. And if you continue we will commence on a profitable frolic where I do the driving and you can sit comfortably in the passenger seat, drinking in the countryside and whatever hipster beverage is in your stainless-steel hydration flask. So buckle up and enjoy history’s histrionics. And remember, with me doing the driving, there’ll be one extra air bag in the vehicle.  Read the rest of this entry »

Bonkers in the Bunker: Hitler’s Final Days

Young Adolf, seen here in happier times. Note absence of malice.

With the recent discovery of Adolf Hitler’s Berlin bunker diary, scholars and skinheads alike have been combing the pages for insights into why the charismatic German Chancellor and spawn of Satan unleashed such evil. His diary was unearthed quite inadvertently when Disney broke ground for a new theme park in Berlin called “Maus Haus”. The handwritten journal catalogues how Hitler’s formerly unshakable belief in Aryan supremacy, miraculously transforms itself into a muddle of anxiety, so that ironically, by the end of the diary he sounds less like the ruler of the Master Race and more like a kvetching Jew. The same accounting firm that supervised the Oscar voting process (PricewaterhouseCooper) authenticated the diary, so we know it’s legit. Of course verification was made easier because of Hitler’s telltale handwriting – he dotted all his i’s with little swastikas.

Historians wonder what motivated Hitler. They speculate on Hitler this, and Hitler that. What I wonder is why Hitler is always referred to simply as “Hitler” and never as “Mr. Hitler”, as in, “Mr. Hitler then decided to invade his neighbor Poland.” Wait! Oh I see why. Mr. Hitler humanizes Hitler. Historians want to eliminate the possibility of a buoyant and fatherly “Mr. Hitler” rallying his nation to find their greatness after the humiliation of WWI. But one can easily imagine a title-less “Hitler” fanatically leading Germany down an inglorious path of self-destruction. Maybe that’s why there’s no Mr. Genghis Khan or Mr. Vlad the Impaler. Read the rest of this entry »

Diarya

"Mom, I'm home. Mom. Mom!"

“Mom, I’m home. Mom. Mom!”

It’s not easy coaxing a demented fictional character to write a humorous piece based on a personal experience, but with the help of Dr. Brown’s Flux Capacitor (on loan from Back to the Future) I brought the whole project together with minimum time warping and maximum hilarity. Although Mr. Bates is nutso to the core, he’s kinda entertaining when he puts pen to paper. No one was hurt in the making of Diarya and the only casualty was melancholy. So without further ado I present to you with limited run on sentences:

Diarya – A remembrance by Norman Bates of Psycho fame.

Trust me. This is some good sh*t. Read the rest of this entry »