Wednesday, April 26, 2017


77th Bomb Squadron's B-25 Southeast of Attu Island, Alaska, 1943 Photo Courtesy of Army Air Corps
So I woke up the other day convinced that H. L. Mencken had been killed in the crash of a B-25 Mitchell. Along with somebody else who I actually know but won't name here as he's still alive and well, last I checked.

The dream felt very real, when I woke up it took a few moments to realize that it had been a dream.

While I did know who H. L. Mencken was (and no, he didn't die in a plane crash, or aircraft "mishap" as we used to say in Uncle Sam's Aerial Follies, he died in his sleep at the age of 75, way back in 1956) I had no idea why I had a dream with him in it. Well, not "in" it per se, but he was mentioned.

So of course, after regaining my wits (such as they are) I went to my trusty cell phone and, of course, Googled Mr. Mencken. Apparently he's a rather quotable fellow.

So, because I am exhausted, AND my post from yesterday was (to me anyway) semi-coherent, AND because I was a bit snappish in the comments, I realize that attempting to write anything which might possibly make sense might well be futile. So, here are a few of Mr. Mencken's quotes, for your edification and enjoyment -
Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.

Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.

No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public.

Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.

On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.

The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.

Democracy is a pathetic belief in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance.
Now, I don't really agree with all of those, but I can't say I disagree either.

That second one is used by a blogger I read from time to time, I just can't remember who right now. (For what it's worth, I have my driver's license in front of me so that I'll remember who I am. Yes, I am that tired.) If someone would refresh my memory on that, I'd be much obliged.

Here's an actual conversation I had with The Nuke the other day, who is very concerned that with The Missus Herself being away, there is a perceived danger that I will no longer be quite house broken when Mama returns to Chez Sarge.

TN: "So Dad, have you gone feral yet?"

YHS: "Why yes, yes I have. Right now I'm running through the woods clad in naught but a loin cloth carrying a flint tipped spear of my own making."

TN: "While talking on your cell phone..."

YHS: "You'd be surprised how good the reception is in this part of the forest."

And people wonder why I haven't been put in a home yet...

I'm off to bed, I really need the sleep.

Y'all talk among yourselves...


  1. Going feral. Hmmm. Technically speaking I go feral when my wife leaves for work, and then I redomesticate when she comes home. I wonder how that will go when she retires next year.

  2. Mencken did have some memorable quotes, though I'm not sure he would have been a nice to to be around. Short periods of absence by the gentler sex reminds us of just how much they add to our lives.

    1. He was also a fan of Nietzsche, I'm not.

      Absolutely right on your last.

  3. Sarge - the other blogger to whom you refer (I think) is Ace of Spades HQ. One of my "go to" sites as well . . .

  4. Mencken suffered a stroke in 1948 and for the last eight years of his life he was unable to read.
    Once an acquaintance referred to something that happened in 1947 and Mencken said, "That was the year before I died."
    As an avid reader, I can sympathize, and I'm sure you can, too.

    1. Unable to read?!?! Dear Lord, kill me now. I don't think I could handle that.

    2. Being Blind is my worst fear for an old age disability. Not being able to read (or having to learn a new method) being a large part of that.

    3. Blindness is my personal nightmare as well.

    4. I'm with the two of you; if I could no longer read, I would not wish to live.


  5. He did not have much faith in people other than himself, did he. I liked the one on Puritanism best.

  6. At times I just want to say, "Aaaarrrgh!"
    MB is prepared to join me.

  7. As usual, your post is good and the commenters uphold the standard. (Present comment excluded.)

    Paul L. Quandt

  8. Hey, I can be a feral-american. And join the ranks of the professional victims league! Problem SOLVED!

    I look at all these dumb sonsabeeches screwing up the world and I start to panic. And then I notice all the people unexpectedly doing wonderful, noble things. And then I find myself screwing up the world and realize that I, too, am a dumb sonsabeech.

    Some days I don't know what to do, and the feral state looks MIGHTY good.

    1. Except in the winter. And flint knapping is hard. Other than that...

    2. Hmm. Flint knapping. Is there like an app for that?

    3. Hahaha!

      Android no, iPhone maybe.

    4. When I was an anthropology student, there was a grad student who could make a projectile point ( think arrow head ) in fewer than 30 minutes out of a piece of glass. Much easier than flint knapping. BTW, does that ( flint knapping ) mean abducting a well known SF author?

      Paul L. Quandt

    5. Hahaha! I like the way you think Paul!

  9. Your daughter seems to have keen insight.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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