Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Victor, The Feral Boy...!

For today let's talk about feral children. One in particular, Victor of Aveyron.

While many cases of feral children are actually cases involving child abuse or abandonment, there remains many reports from around the world of actual feral children found in the wild. Unpleasant, but factual.

Victor of Aveyron

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

In the early 1800s, a young French boy was spotted living in the woods. The wild child was clearly fearful of people. Eventually, however, he emerged on his own. Lacking language, preferring uncooked food, and covered in scars, it was obvious that he had been wild for most of his life.

A physician named Jean Marc Gaspard Itard took in the boy, naming him Victor. Itard studied Victor for five years. Although the only words Victor ever learned were lait (“milk”) and Dieu (“God”), he did make great progress in learning empathy–one of the traits that Itard believed separated humans from other animals.

Sadly there are more modern versions of feral children even in this day and age. Google it and you'll see what I mean.

Coffee out on the patio on this fine Spring day!

Jonathan Davis On Western Wednesday...!

Here is a story of a man that faced what would seem to be impossible odds and came out the winner. That didn't happen often in a gunfight, but this was not an ordinary man.

Davis–Sydney Ducks Shoot-Out

If there is one man you definitely don’t want to face in a gunfight, it’s Captain Jonathan R. Davis. On December 19, 1854, he single-handedly took on a dangerous gang of robbers and killed 11 of them.

Davis was a former army captain turned prospector. On the day in question, he was working with his two partners when they were ambushed by a band of outlaws. Almost half of the men were “Sydney Ducks,” criminal immigrants from Australia. The rest were Mexicans, Americans, Brits, and even a Frenchman, 13 in total. They were thought to be responsible for 10 murders just in the few days prior.

They charged the three prospectors, guns blazing. Davis’s partners were gunned down immediately. One died on the spot, and the other would succumb to his wounds days later. Davis had time to pull out his revolvers and start firing. By the time he ran out of bullets, seven outlaws were on the ground. Four of the survivors decided to approach Davis with blades—three with Bowie knives and one with a sword. Unfortunately for them, Davis had his own knife and was quite adept at using it. He took turns disarming and stabbing each one of his assailants, even cutting the nose off one of them.

The remaining robbers, finally realizing they had no chance, made a run for it. Seven of their comrades lay dead at Davis’s feet, and four more later died of their injuries.

I'd say that this man was one genuine bad-ass! I found this story over on Listverse with other stories of famous gunfights of the Old West.

Coffee out on the patio again this morning!

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Mysterious Guardian ...!

Sometimes help can come from mysterious places, such as in this story from the pages of Listverse.

True this story is a bit creepy, but in a good way. I think you'll agree after you read it, but I'll let you be the judge.

The Guardian

Photo credit: The Salt Lake Tribune

Responding to a tip from a local fisherman, two Utah police officers discovered an overturned car in the frigid waters of a river outside the town of Spanish Fork. Suddenly, they were shocked to hear a voice—faint but unmistakable—coming from the car. “Help me,” it called.

And indeed, they did find someone alive in the vehicle—an 18-month-old girl who most certainly had not called for help. Her young mother, whom police later determined had simply run off the road for no apparent reason, was dead in the front seat. Certainly, she had not called for help, either. So who did?

The voice “wasn’t just in our heads . . . it was plain as day. I remember hearing a voice that didn’t sound like a child, just saying ‘help me,’ ” explained one of the officers. Despite hanging upside down for 14 hours in the bitter cold with no food or water, the child survived—thanks largely to her mysterious guardian.

No matter who or what the police officers heard, it worked out for the young child. Sad that the mother lost her life, but the saving of the child had to be of some comfort to the family, I would think.

Coffee out on the patio, where it looks a lot like SPRING!

Monday, March 19, 2018

Missing Diver For Monday Mystery...!

This story is strange on many levels. A diver goes missing sometimes, but generally when the search for him starts, a body is found or at least some clue as to what happened. Not in this case, however.

The Missing Scuba Diver

The warning sign near the entrance to the cave. Photo: Wikipedia

When diver Ben McDaniel descended into the water of Vortex Spring, a large dive park and underwater cave near Ponce de Leon, Florida, he knew it wasn’t going to be an easy plunge. One narrowing tunnel below the surface is even sealed by a locked gate, with a key available only to divers experienced enough to handle its challenges. With the tightest spots in the cave measuring just 10 inches from floor to ceiling, the only way out is the way you came in. McDaniel went down, but he never came back up.

Recovery divers searched every inch of the cave. They explored hundreds of feet beyond the end of the cave map, squeezing through 10-inch spaces. They found just two decompression tanks belonging to McDaniel—but not McDaniel himself, and no other signs that he had been there. No scrapes on the limestone, no feeding fish, and no disturbed silt. His disappearance remains a mystery.

What can I say? If the sign can't stop folks from going into the cave, seems as though it's on them. I hate to say it, but I reckon some folks don't have any common sense.

Coffee out on the patio one more time.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Cartoon Sunday...!

Back for another round of Sunday comics. Does anyone ever get tired of them?

And maybe one more...

OK...that's enough for today. Have a great Sunday!

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

The Smell Of Books...?

As I may have told you before, I am an avid reader. I love to read!

I suppose that's why this advertisement caught my eye. Can you believe someone makes a candle that actually smells like books? I'm almost tempted to buy one and see if the claim is true...almost!

Could a Book-Scented Candle Make Your Place Smell… Smarter?
Options include “Sherlock’s Study” and “Reading at the Cafe.”



‘Old Book’ Scented Candle
$18, Amazon

LET’S ADDRESS A TOUCHY, BUT undeniable fact: interesting people (and their homes or offices) don’t always smell good. Geniuses and eccentrics can easily lose sight of little things, like cleaning or hygiene, in their intellectual fervor. Luckily, our idea of how they should smell has been lovingly distilled into a collection of literary-themed scented candles.

Frostbeard Studio offers a range of “Book Lover’s” scents inspired by specific titles, including “The Shire” (The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy), “Sherlock’s Study” (the Sherlock Holmes canon), and “Winterfell” (A Song of Ice and Fire). But their most intriguing scents are the more broadly described ones, such as “Old Books” or “Reading at the Cafe.” The whole concept evokes what you want interesting people (and places) to smell like, even if that’s not always the reality.

While some reviewers argue that the candles don’t smell exactly like used books, we’re still intrigued by any scent that makes us feel like we should be reading.

I got this ad from the folks over at AtlasObscura. Plenty of good reading over there, with some interesting stories!

Coffee out on the patio this morning, where the temps are going to be in the mid 80s today!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Deer Island For Freaky Friday...!

Some places have a tendency to attract ghost stories, or legends, or otherwise dark and mysterious folk tales. Such is a place in this post.

Strange Activities Of Deer Island

Deer Island sits in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Biloxi, Mississippi. It is home to a plethora of tales that date back to the early 19th century and continue today. Many of the sightings are reported by fishermen who would use the island as a base camp of sorts during fishing trips.

They have long told, for example, of the Firewater Ghost (sometimes called the Ghost of Blue Fire), a ball of blue fire that is often seen moving speedily under or on the surface of the water. Despite its name, many researchers in the modern age have likened details of the sightings to similar sightings of UFOs.

A headless skeleton is also said to roam the island. Legends state that the skeleton belongs to an unfortunate pirate who was decapitated by his fellow crew so that he would remain on the island to watch over their loot.

I would suggest here that any stories along these lines about any place be taken with a pinch of salt! Could be some of the stories might originate after the story-teller has had a fair amount of liquid courage, if you know what I mean.

Coffee out on the patio again this morning. Predicted highs...low 80s.