Monday, December 14, 2009
I don't really have all that much to say. I want to go around this place and get internet wherever I want but I can't. I have been reading a lot more than I ever have before which is a good thing. I like books that have to do with food and foodstuffs. I recently read An Edible History of Humanity and a History of the World in 6 Glasses. I found out why its impolite to ask for sugar and instead you must wait to be offered a spoon or lump of sugar for your tea or coffee. I figured out why Napoleon and Alexander the Great were so successful. I also read a book by Kurt Vonnegut called A Man Without a Country and got a real appreciation for Abraham Lincoln quotes. I read a book called State by State A Panoramic Portrait of America which was really good too. I read a book called Beer in America: The Early Years. I also read a book called Noble Obsession which is about Charles Goodyear. Did you know that Goodyear tires has nothing to do with Charles Goodyear? Its funny because unless Goodyear tires decided to use Goodyear's name none one would even recognize it... Goodyear was undoubtedly obsessed by rubber an obsession that would drive his family into poverty and himself into debtors prison. Debtors prison is a horrible thing, be glad they don't exist in America today. The debtor had to stay in prison for as long as those who were owned wanted to pay the fee required to feed and clothe the poor bastard. An employee once brought a case against his employer for not paying him. He was black so he lost and the employer demanded court fees as well did the court. Having not been PAID by his EMPLOYER he couldn't AFFORD to pay so he was locked up in debtors prison. I think it was for twenty years... I don't think the word "noble" was used appropriately because in hindsight its easy to say what a great man he was. But his family suffered and many of his children died. I think its because they were poor and couldn't give their children what they deserved... The accidental discovery of vulcanization--a term that wasn't actually coined by Goodyear--didn't bring the success Goodyear was hoping for. You might remember hearing about Goodyear dropping a sulfur covered piece of rubber on a stove to find it was impervious to heat or cold. Its odd that this happened by accident because replicating it is extremely difficult even today vulcanizing rubber remains difficult. Anyway those are some books I read in brief.
Posted by Jack at 7:42 PM