A Sophomore History Of The World – Part 3

Everything was going along just fine — until the Europeans learned how to build boats.  For the next 300 years, they sailed around the world being total dicks to everybody.  They’d show up uninvited at various pristine locations and start cutting down the trees and peeing in the rivers.  Then, when the locals, who were invariably running near-utopian civilizations — tidy, peaceful, and cultured — calmly suggested they stop, all hell would break loose.  The Europeans would go for their guns (products of the early Military-Industrial Complex) and start shooting people and stealing their best stuff.  Somehow, this always came as a complete surprise to indigenous peoples — even though the pattern was repeated over and over for 20 generations (1492 – 1776.).  (It should be noted that, although women have always made major contributions to the world, they had absolutely nothing to do with this nasty business and only concerned themselves with the good parts of history.)

In 1776 (although nobody knew it at the time) there was a major shift in world power when a bunch of rich, Virginia farm boys decided they didn’t want to be Europeans anymore: they wanted to be something even nastier – Americans.  They succeeded beyond their wildest expectations – but more about that later.

In the rest of the world, things were pretty much status quo.  Europeans were running around raping, pillaging, raiding, plundering, exploiting, kicking widows, spitting on orphans and staying awake nights, thinking up other horrible things to do to the planet and the people on it.  Eventually, they came up with the Industrial Revolution.  Wow!  What a game-changer!  Suddenly, raping, pillaging, raiding, plundering, exploiting, kicking widows and spitting on orphans wasn’t just a hit-and- miss proposition anymore; it was part of the system.  And here’s the nastiest bit!  The sneaky bastards called it “capitalism” and convinced the entire world it was a good thing.  Anyway, the Military-Industrial Complex loved capitalism the way a French pig loves truffles, and that kicked both systems into high gear.  Pretty soon, Europe was spewing arms and ammunition like a freshman at a frat party.  But it was a case of too many weapons and nobody left to kill.  By the 20th century, Europeans had already fought everybody — including the Maoris, the Nepalese, the Bhutanese and the Ethiopians. There was only one thing left to do: fight with each other.  Which leads us to World War I, World War II and Adolf Hitler – the meanest man in history.

But wait!  There’s more!

Remember those Virginia farm boys?  They’d been hiding out in North America, quietly practicing their own brand of nasty on anybody they could get their mitts on for 150 years.  They took one look at the Europeans going at each other, thought, “Hey! Here’s our chance! That Charlie Chaplin lookin’ sucker can’t be that tough.” and proceeded to kick his ass.  Suddenly, nasty had a new Numero Uno: America.

So here we are in the 21st century, the peak of human knowledge and social understanding, with a bunch of problems created by dead Europeans and America is busy making them worse.

The End

Disclaimer:  Folks! – please!  Before you send me that email questioning my knowledge, my ancestry and my sanity, remember: this is satire!  It’s meant to lampoon simple interpretations of complex problems.

Stuff I Learned In Paris


As I may have mentioned, we were recently in Paris (brag, brag) and after several days of keen observation, I’ve discovered a few things that are indicative of French culture.  This is boots-on-the-ground information that isn’t available on any website or in the guidebooks.  So, as a public service, I’m going to pass it on to you

Even a couple of old people can outmaneuver the “Yellow Vests” protesters (and the teargas) if they keep their noses in the wind and an eye on the cops to see which way they’re running.

When a Paris policewoman says “Attendez!” you better “attendez” right now — they don’t carry those little black clubs for nothing.

Parisian pedestrians are fearless.  They treat traffic signals as mere suggestions and oncoming cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles and those little, green hell-on-two-wheels scooters as some kinda personal challenge.

The Musee D’Orsay has been turned into a living piece of Installation Art where foreigners wander around, holding their telephones over their heads.  It’s an interesting concept, but I don’t see the point.  Oh!  And apparently, they have some paintings on the walls, too, but you can’t actually see them.

Fashion Week is a scam.  You can get all the Red Carpet you need by sitting in a sidewalk café with a glass of wine.

French clothes fit.  French women’s clothes fit very well.

The only thing more romantic than a warm Parisian afternoon is a wool-scarf chilly Parisian evening.

French people have sexy hardwired into their DNA.

There’s an established rumour that French waiters are surly, arrogant and rude.  Oddly enough, none of the ones we met got that memo.

French bread is the best in the world.  And (little known fact) if you eat in a French restaurant, they have to, by law, provide you with free bread.  Apparently, this has something to do with that nasty “Let them eat cake” business.

And finally:

The all-night cultural event, Nuit Blanche, proved to me — once and for all — I’m not as young as I used to be.