Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I Drink, and I Know Things

       I obviously borrowed the post til from Tyrion Lannister, but I do not mimic his drinking habits. There I no mead in the glass. Dr. Pepper is my drink of choice. Perhaps there exists a debate on the health detriments of alcohol versus caffeine, but it is one for another time. Or never. I am really not interested.
       What has interested me lately is history. More specifically, Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast. I randomly came across "Blueprint for Armageddon" on YouTube a couple months ago. "Blueprint for Armageddon" is an impressively detailed account of the First World War largely from the perspective of the ordinary men who fought it. The series is long—five chapters at about four hours each—but are well worth the time invested. I put them on in the background while I worked on other things, but often find myself stopping to focus solely on the narrative.
       There are fifty-seven or so episodes of Hardcore History out there. I have listened to about forty of them thus far from. The episodes can be straightforward histories like “Blueprint for Armageddon” or the equally in depth “Death Throes of the Republic,” about the transition of Rome from Republic to Empire. Others tackle the philosophical questions of history, such as psychological issues as a factor in ancient/pre-modern times. Both perspectives of historical study have their merits.
       I say all this as introduction for a point coming up in a few posts. The is a concept Sine Qua Non is going to delve into because of what amount to—in terms of the individual podcast, at any rate—an inconsequential line, but had a large impact on me. It lead me to a road I plan to walk down a while. This is by way of preview for upcoming posts.
       If you are a history buff, I recommend Hardcore History. Carlin is not an historian. He is a journalist in California who has a fascination with the subject. As such, there is some question as to the credibility of some of the podcast. Or that his choice of subject matter is always interesting. I bypassed about seventeen episodes with no intention of revisiting. I will not say he is a charlatan. He I most certainly not a revisionist, but he is not Victor Davis Hanson, either Consider Carlin’s offerings entertainment from a well read layman.        

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