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Archive for September, 2007

Here’s some inspiration for you all:

Somebody said that it couldn’t be done,
But he with a chuckle replied
That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one
Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.

So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
on his face. If he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

Somebody scoffed: “Oh, you’ll never do that;
At least no one ever has done it”;
But he took off his coat and he took off his hat,
And the first thing we knew he’d begun it.

With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,
Without any doubting or quiddit,
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
There are thousands to prophesy failure;
There are thousands to point out to you one by one,
The dangers that wait to assail you.

But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,
Just take off your coat and go to it;
Just start to sing as you tackle the thing
That “cannot be done,” and you’ll do it.

-Edgar A. Guest

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Here are some links to the recommended readings from Lectures 2 & 3 – Rise of Feudal Christendom, Part 1 (c.476-c.1066):

Emerton –Introduction to the Middle Ages: Books.Google.com. (Free on-line)
Adams — The Growth of the French Nation:
Scanserver.ulib.org. (Free on-line)
Hollister — The Making of England:
Ecampus.com
Menzies — History of Germany: Amazon.com 
Parmele — Short History of Spain:
Amazon.com 

(According to Scott Powell, this last book has a Christian slant, but it’s so obvious as to be harmless.)

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On this day in history, 1698, Tsar Peter the Great’s program to “westernize” Russia underwent an important “surge.”  In a bid to force the nobility to abandon their eastern customs, Peter implemented a tax on beards! 

Considering how well Russia’s westernization went, and considering the historical record concerning non-bearded Muslim political leaders, I don’t think this is something the Iraqi government should be looking at. ;-)

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