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October 24, 2017, 01:14:20 AM
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Author Topic: My Life, Day 14,089  (Read 719 times)
ER
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« on: July 21, 2017, 10:58:49 PM »

I can feel it coming on…insomnia. Not the absence of sleep, or not only the absence of sleep, but a definite sensation in its own right, a sort of hyper-weariness that assails even as it holds sleep at bay, spilling into each cell like an oil slick, filling them with its own torment, stealing the sleep energies from within.

Sure it’s not yet late, the children are in bed, my husband is sitting on the floor at the foot of our bed, playing The Last Guardian on PS4, and until I started writing this I was beside him, knees drawn up to my chest, watching, until I finally told him, “I’m going to have one of those nights.”

“Want me to stay up with you?” he asked.

“No, when you’re tired go to sleep. Someone has to be bright-eyed and not brain-fossilized for the children tomorrow. (We've had that dialogue many times before.)

So a few minutes after telling him that I scooted up here on the bed (clean-sheeted, of course) and thought, well, if your brain isn’t in the right setting to read, write. Yeah, write what? Hmm, how about you TMI-bomb BMDO for the sixteenth time this summer? Maybe finally push the space limitations too far and crash the site. (Honestly, how far do they go? Could I put War and Peace in here? Let’s not try it.)

So, if you’ve read this far, tag, you’re it.

As I was saying, this is my life, day 14,089. And in case you are wondering, yeah, this actually is my 14,089th day on this spinning rock in the galaxy’s wastes, our pale blue dot as Carl Sagan, hero of the second boy to ever kiss me, used to call it. (He kissed me, I did not kiss him. I was in love with someone else. I've already covered all that in here.)

If I begin at the beginning, it wouldn’t be like David Copperfield saying, “I am born” “I got up today” is good enough for my nebulous purposes here.

Today I got to sleep a little later than usual, a whole fifteen minutes, courtesy of my husband and oldest daughter getting up at the same time to put the dogs out. I came awake to the sound of thunder (delicate or otherwise, Mr. Floyd) got up, got ready for my two-day-per-week outside the home job, eventually made my way downstairs, the oddly orderly scene spread before me like a tableau vivant made me pause and think, huh, I grow more redundant every week, don’t I?

Knowing I was going to lunch today I didn’t eat, but did watch the others undertake the act.

Just before my husband was going to leave and drive the children to his mother’s for the day so he could go to work and I could do the same, his mother texted him:

“When out to buy donuts. Only five minutes away. Let me get them from you there.”

Which she did, and as she came I turned on the TV and saw the morning newscasts were featuring live looks at the expressway I needed to be on, courtesy of traffic cams, and it looked like a monsoon was over it, so I figured I’d stay home til the storm passed. My husband, who had to drive to a whole different state (technically a commonwealth) had the same thought, and he said, “Hey, the kids are gone. Let’s hang out.”

I said, “No, man, I’m dressed for work.”

He gave me a look and laughed and I said, “Oh. Nevermind.” It was a funny moment, and I guess my mind has a mind of its own and that mind lingers near the bedroom or the gutter.

However, turns out I was actually right the first time and he did mean that, but I’m skipping ahead of my narrative.

Anyhow, he took a deck of cards and we played Indian Poker, and he won, so…you know, he won.

Finally the storm passed and it wasn’t that bad where we were, not like the putting Thor's undies in a twist someone across town must’ve accomplished to have the downpour they did. I made it to work, the circle expressway was calm and empty, and waiting the extra time made all the difference. Went in and for the second time in a week I had a commission check waiting. Not a grand sum to be sure but enough to make it worth my having gone lately: not always the case on straight commission.

But I found my boss was in high spirits, another deviation from how he’s been lately, and he said come sit with me a second, how’s life, how are the kids, how’s the pretty boy I told you to have fun with but not marry? (Fine, fine, suspiciously lucky at cards today, grrr.)

Went back to my desk afterward, second biggest there, set the interns working, morning breezed by, it was soon lunchtime, my blood sugar was beginning to flutter, my boss said to take an extra long lunch if I wanted, not much going on, and besides, I held down the fort for him last time I was in and covered for him when an irate German called wanting to talk to him not me on the grounds that my boss’ German was better than his English. (His English sounded fine to me, and included intimate familiarity with some four-letter colloquialisms.) He also told me something I had not known since I am almost entirely ignorant of the German language, that being that my fath—um, I mean my boss’ accent when he waxes in the tongue Teutonic, sounds very much like that of the former East Germany.

Interesting…

(Well interesting to me, anyhow, but I have a low threshold for what is interesting, and if you remember I did warn you twice already—I think I did---this post would be boring, and in fact if you happened to have insomnia when you began reading it, fear not, that’ll soon go away.)

Anyway, lunchtime, and every other Friday, by custom, I meet my godson’s grandfather/my best friend’s father/my almost father-in-law for Indian. (The other Friday we usually sit in his car and have whatever.) After that he and I invariably linger a second and end the meal with a lassi, mine is rosewater, he likes mango and cumin, spicy, actually. I kind of eat slowly, he eats quickly, in fact he’s one of those people who took a great leap into life decades ago and is still rushing forward on the same wave of momentum, and firmly holds that he’ll slow down when he’s dead, not before. So often, he’ll sit there done (and he doesn’t overeat, like, ever, less than I do in proportion, and I used to starve myself for smurfs and giggles) and I’ll still be pecking away at my palak paneer, and he said today, as he always does, “Take your time, I’ll just sit here talking to you, Evelyn.”

(Starting with his son his family has almost always called me Evelyn, my birth name, but hardly anyone else does.)

I did and he told me a funny story about one of his associates getting thrown out of a Mercedes dealership for hard-selling the manager. I asked him what he was going to do about it and he said, “What, to the sales associate or the dealership? In either case the answer is nothing. It happens.”

I asked if he’d ever been chucked out of a place he was trying to interest in advertising, and he said no, but sometimes he wished they would so he could leave.

I asked why, and he said because sometimes if he was there too long he’d need a bump. (The man used to have a HUGE cocaine problem, long ago.)

I asked if that was the real reason and he said he was just making a joke. (I guess I was a little Vulcan today, literal-minded.)

He said he did have to go at the bottom of the hour to take his lawfully-wedded but not entirely domestically-embraced wife to a chiropractor for a pinched nerve in her back, and since I dwell so warmly in her heart’s embrace (or not) I wished her well.

He asked me not for the first time if I’ve given more thought to my plans for the fall when my youngest will go to afternoon kindergarten, and he said I’ve never struck him as the type to “revel in free time.” (Ironic since I am sitting here hammering out a replay of my day for others to read or not.) He said again I should come work “with him” and he could “almost guarantee” (is that like being “almost pregnant”?) I’d make three times what I did now, which would be good money.

Me, I feel a certain fascinated flattery that every time he offers me a job he says “work WITH me” whereas in all his descriptions of everyone else there, he says they “work FOR me.”

I thanked him again but the fact is the main reason I work where I do now, aside from the occasion monetary compensation, is to be near my father, and as long as he is running the place, I’d rather be where I am, but it is a nice offer, and it’s flattering to be liked and valued.

He agreed that there are more important things in life than money, and yeah, there are a few.

I gave him a hug, said I'd see him Sunday, and left and drove back to my work and I was having a good day, but it flashed into my mind that if I took that job my resume for the present decade would show I rode the coat tails of first my father and then my almost father-in-law. Not much in the way of personal achievement there. I began to ponder me perhaps….doing something with my life that was all my own achievement. What that could be I cannot yet conceive.

But then I came in and drank some strong green tea and in that wired state the aggravating self-doubt went away and I felt ready to shadowbox a vampire. (And no my current insomnia isn’t tea related, I drink that all the time at work and it doesn’t keep me up.)

I ended up helping do fulfillment with an intern named Emily, and we were fulfillment machines, man, we got a stack done in under an hour that should have taken the rest of the afternoon! I asked if she wanted to go for a walk, and when she vacillated citing a heat advisory outdoors, I accused her generation of lacking vigor and then defined “vigor” for her without irony, and she walked down the cobbled street with me to a place that sold pineapple freezes, I got her one and we came back, the clock then dragged, boy it took forever, but they left at 4:30, I waited til five, told my boss to give my mom a kiss for me, and went home.

I came back to a quiet house…odd…and there on the table was a note from my husband that said (I am not making this up):

“I have decided this is no longer working and have taken the children and gone. Don’t bother trying to find us. Honestly, how you can think anyone can tolerate you choice in linen closet décor mystifies me. PS Thanks for one for the road this morning.”

Uh-huh, I didn’t fall off the turnip truck last Tuesday (actually I was pushed from behind and it was a Thursday) so I sent my oldest a text: “Your daddy’s taken you three to the movies, I’m guessing?”

She said, “Right xoxo.”

Too easy.

Yaay, free time, empty house, right?

Wrong, I am one of those weird sorts who wants to be with her offspring, heck some of the happiest times I’ve ever spent were invested with them every minute of the day. I soon got so possessed by ennui I decided to see how slowly I could eat an over-ripened Dole banana while reading Les Miserables in the original French, something I been crawling through since 2007. (Every six months or so I’ll get the urge to plow in and then burn out after a chapter or two. Nobody spoil it for me but old Jean has life pretty good at the moment. That lasts for him, right?) The time on the ‘nana was about sixty-two minutes, but I had to masticate slowly to make it last.

Well, life got happier when familia mea, fortitude mea came home bearing a peanut butter shake for me (they each had vanilla for some reason) and half a bag of movie theater popcorn, which I almost ate until my son screamed, “No, Mom, it’s for the birds out back! Trinnie stepped in it and it’s got fuzz off the van floor in it!”

Good save, son… I deposited the popcorn back in with whatever dignity I could muster.

And unless I include the evening’s final two hours of family togetherness and segue into getting the kids to bed before sitting and watching my husband play his game feeling sleeplessness crawl toward me like a B-movie monster, that was the day that was fourteen-thousand and eighty-nine.

I can’t imagine anyone actually read this, but if you did, thank you and may your own life be considerably more worthy than mine.


« Last Edit: July 21, 2017, 11:03:05 PM by ER » Logged

"If I should meet thee after long years,

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Paquita
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« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2017, 11:20:07 PM »

I think you purposely posted this to see if I was lying when I said I read everything  Smile.  OK maybe I don't read EVERYTHING, but I do read a lot of what is posted.

My day wasn't nearly as eventful, but coincidentally, I also had Indian for lunch.  It was a slow day at work so I decided to read about the wives of Henry VIII.  I got through 5 of them quite thoroughly (starting with the last) and will save Catherine of Aragon for later.  I got a free shepherd's crook and carried it home on my 1 1/2 commute.  The guy sitting next to me asked to take a picture of it.  As you can see, I don't have nearly as much breath in my fingers as you.  I hope you can get some rest tonight!

 
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indianasmith
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2017, 10:49:46 AM »

I read it all because I am a junkie for all things ER-related!
Sounds like a full and fun day; hope you were eventually able to get some sleep.
Sixty two minutes to eat a banana??  REALLY? Buggedout
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ER
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« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2017, 11:22:23 AM »

I think you purposely posted this to see if I was lying when I said I read everything  Smile.  OK maybe I don't read EVERYTHING, but I do read a lot of what is posted.

My day wasn't nearly as eventful, but coincidentally, I also had Indian for lunch.  It was a slow day at work so I decided to read about the wives of Henry VIII.  I got through 5 of them quite thoroughly (starting with the last) and will save Catherine of Aragon for later.  I got a free shepherd's crook and carried it home on my 1 1/2 commute.  The guy sitting next to me asked to take a picture of it.  As you can see, I don't have nearly as much breath in my fingers as you.  I hope you can get some rest tonight!

 

I used to be something of an apologist for Henry VIII (maybe subtly rebelling against Catholic school history classes, which were understandably not charitable toward him) but the older I get the more I see him as a narcissistic sociopath and a bit of an overall jerk to boot. I've also always kind of felt for Anne Boleyn in particular, and have figured if ever a king fell for me I'd end up checking out by the same route. (When I was younger I tended to intensely fascinate the men who liked me, and then not always left them better off than before they knew me. Do that to a spiteful king, and well....)

What do you think about him?

BTW, ever read Margaret George's The Autobiography of Henry VIII? Whatever may be said of him, I think she got his outlook on himself right in that novel.
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"If I should meet thee after long years,

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--Lord Byron
indianasmith
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« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2017, 05:30:30 PM »

I think the life of Henry VIII is a wonderful morality tale; a cautionary play on the corrupting nature of power.
As a young man, he wanted nothing more than to be a good, just, and dutiful King.  But he slowly turned into a bitter, hateful shell of the optimistic young ruler he had once been, more and more incapable of recognizing his own mistakes.  Instead he chose to punish others for his own shortcomings.  I think, even at the end, there was a shadow of the idealistic young man there, but disappointment and pain made it harder and harder for that side of his personality to show.

And I LOVED Margaret George's book and actually read it twice.
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"Carpe diem!" - Seize the day!  "Carpe per diem!" - Seize the daily living allowance! "Carpe carp!" - Seize the fish!
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ER
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The world becomes a dream....


« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2017, 06:11:50 PM »

Indy, you might like Margaret George's current book on young Nero, the first of a planned series. She takes a more charitable view of him than most historians have, rather like how you were with Tiberius in The Testimonium. (Which everyone here oughta read.)
« Last Edit: July 24, 2017, 02:07:34 PM by ER » Logged

"If I should meet thee after long years,

How shall I greet thee? With silence, and tears."

--Lord Byron
indianasmith
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« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2017, 10:40:24 PM »

For a female writer, she is very good at expressing a male point of view.
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"Carpe diem!" - Seize the day!  "Carpe per diem!" - Seize the daily living allowance! "Carpe carp!" - Seize the fish!
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Paquita
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« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2017, 10:11:20 PM »

I think you purposely posted this to see if I was lying when I said I read everything  Smile.  OK maybe I don't read EVERYTHING, but I do read a lot of what is posted.

My day wasn't nearly as eventful, but coincidentally, I also had Indian for lunch.  It was a slow day at work so I decided to read about the wives of Henry VIII.  I got through 5 of them quite thoroughly (starting with the last) and will save Catherine of Aragon for later.  I got a free shepherd's crook and carried it home on my 1 1/2 commute.  The guy sitting next to me asked to take a picture of it.  As you can see, I don't have nearly as much breath in my fingers as you.  I hope you can get some rest tonight!

 

I used to be something of an apologist for Henry VIII (maybe subtly rebelling against Catholic school history classes, which were understandably not charitable toward him) but the older I get the more I see him as a narcissistic sociopath and a bit of an overall jerk to boot. I've also always kind of felt for Anne Boleyn in particular, and have figured if ever a king fell for me I'd end up checking out by the same route. (When I was younger I tended to intensely fascinate the men who liked me, and then not always left them better off than before they knew me. Do that to a spiteful king, and well....)

What do you think about him?

BTW, ever read Margaret George's The Autobiography of Henry VIII? Whatever may be said of him, I think she got his outlook on himself right in that novel.

My impression of him, from what I know, is that he was probably a better person for this period than others would have been in his position.  Definitely narcissistic, but he was the king so I can forgive that of him.  He seemed to truly care for his children, was well liked by the public, and though he banished and executed some of them, at least 3 of his wives' last sentiments towards him were kind, though that could have been purposely mis-recorded on his order, or perhaps said as dutiful queens to keep the king in the favor of the public, or as an act of forgiveness toward their enemy to secure their place in heaven.  At any rate, it cannot be ignored.  I've heard some theories that he may have suffered a brain injury in that jousting accident in 1536 that radically changed his personality.  I don't really buy that, however, having lost a tournament in what must have been an embarrassing public accident, sustained a permanent injury, and lost yet another son certainly would be enough to change someone for the worse without brain damage.

I also felt for Anne.  I think they were really in love and I don't believe she did the things she was executed for, though I think Henry may have been convinced she did, even if he had to convince himself before he went through with it.  I think it's been said that before she was accused he had supposedly already set his sights on Jane, but I don't think that cavorting about with ladies was unusual for him.  I like to think he never really got over her and truly missed her.

I have not read The Autobiography of Henry VIII, but I might now!
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BoyScoutKevin
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« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2017, 02:23:16 PM »

One advantage we have over the people of that time (1485-1603) is that hindsight is 20/20. Thus, we may not know the solution to the problems, but we do know the problem. After that it is all downhill.

What we once thought was true is now known to be false. For example , what we thought was a contemporary description of Lady Jane Grey is now known to be from the 1st decade of the 20th century.

They are not like you and me. Thus, forget the idea that marriages were between 2 people who loved each other. When most marriages were arranged marriages to benefit one's country, one's family, and oneself. Most likely in that order.

They are what I say they are. If I say the children from that time were passive individuals and dominated by the adults in their lives, then they were passive and told what to do by adults. When we now know that both boys and girls were far from passive, standing up for themselves, and telling the adults what to do.

We do not know what they were thinking. The best we have is a guess at what they were thinking from the 2nd hand information. If we know that a godmother asked that her godchild be named for her husband, then she probably had some tender feelings for him. And when her husband carved his wife's name on the wall of the cell, where he was waiting execution, then he probably had feelings for her, too.

As for the problems that existed at that time.

Health.
Of course, not only physical, but also mental, as depression seemingly rang thru the Tudors. The only one escaping is Edward. Probably because he died so young.

Religion
England could not decide whether it was Catholic or Protestant. It depended upon who was the monarch, and sometimes it varied within the reign of the same monarch.

Sexism
No woman could lead, because she had to have a man tell here what to do. All of these problems leading to the biggest problem, that of succession

Succession
Misunderstandings. Marriages. Executions. Divorces. And the by-passing of the more competent (Greys and Dudleys) for the lesser competent (Tudors and Stuarts.)

Next time: who I'd recommend in the way of writers for this time period (1485-1603.)
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« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2017, 03:21:14 AM »

ER-you are an amazing writer. You should do something with it. I don't write here no mo' (I was out of control) but I still come here just to read your posts.
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The world becomes a dream....


« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2017, 08:37:33 AM »

ER-you are an amazing writer. You should do something with it. I don't write here no mo' (I was out of control) but I still come here just to read your posts.

That's sweet of you, Ronny, thanks!
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"If I should meet thee after long years,

How shall I greet thee? With silence, and tears."

--Lord Byron
ER
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The world becomes a dream....


« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2017, 08:43:57 AM »

PS I wish you would come back.
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"If I should meet thee after long years,

How shall I greet thee? With silence, and tears."

--Lord Byron
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« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2017, 04:10:33 PM »

If there was a way of overcoming the problem of time travel, then there is hardly a historian worth his or her salt, that would not go back in time and ask some historical figure: "WTF! Were you thinking?" Until the problem of time travel is solved, if you are interested in the time period from 1485 to 1603, here are the 4 non-fiction writers, who (IMHO) are the best at getting at the truth.

Gareth Russell
Eric Ives
Christine Hartweg
Leandra de Lisle

The men bring that rarity to the subject, the male perspective, and while the women do not bring a male perspective to the subject, they do seem to be willing to consider the male viewpoint. Which is more than I can say about some women writers. And all 4 are more likely than most writers on the subject not to accept something without questioning it. And they tread not where others have trod, but plow new ground.

And that does not include fiction writers, which we'll take up next time. And there is Nicola Tallis' Crown of Blood, which is the latest book on the subject, and we'll take that up at a later date, too.

Next time: fiction--truth or fiction
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« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2017, 04:00:09 PM »

That was non-fiction. There is also fiction, which allows the writer to be more creative. Though, there is often a kernel of truth in it. For example, Brandy Purdy . . .

Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk and father of the 3 Grey Sisters. Who cheats on his wife, not with a mistress, but being bisexual with handsome young men. One of whom is his own son-in-law. And what is more, if that relationship existed today, in some parts of the world, such as California, the sex would not be consensual, as his son-in-law would be under the age of sexual consent, and thus could not consent to sex.

Of course, there is not a shred of evidence that any of this is true. Yet, there are a couple of doors left open.

1st, when many men at that time had a mistress, some of them having as many as 20 in their lifetime, he is not known to ever have a mistress.

2nd, in the time that he was married, when some men had as many as a dozen children with their wife, he only had 3 children with his wife.

And in another book, the son-in-law's behavior was so outrageous that he becomes a parody of himself.

Thus, Brandy Purdy, with a large dose of salts.

And Hand, Ashton, and Meadows.
Their book may become a film.

Susan Higginbotham
1st. The book looks at the story from a different point of view, as it looks at the story from the viewpoint of the mothers/mothers-in-law.
2nd. Normally, the husband in the story comes off worst than his wife, or is equal with her, as in the above, but here he comes off better than his wife.
3rd. And most importantly, she has empathy with the men in the story, and you cannot say that about every woman writer. Not only for the baby hubby in the story, but also with the fathers/fathers-in-law and the husbands' brothers, who are often ignored in the story.

And Suzannah Dunn.

Next time: Nicola Tallis' non-fiction Crown of Blood : the Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey.

And if we can find a copy, Philippa Gregory's The Last Tudor, or the fictional story of the 3 Grey Sisters.
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BoyScoutKevin
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« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2017, 04:38:41 PM »

Nicola Tallis
Crown of Blood :
the Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey
1st book
the subtitle says it all.

Introduction
One would not think the subject would not be pertinent after all this time, but it is as pertinent now as it was then, as in . . .

How it is the same. How it has changed. How it is different. How some women do not understand men. How some women have a bias against men. Of course, to be fair, sometimes we men do not understand women, and we can be as biased against women, as women are biased against us. The number in front of the statement is the page number where the fact is found. And my thoughts on it are in all lower case. Finally, do I know what I say is true? No! But, do I believe what I say is true? Yes!

Next time: what the writer got write.
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