Sunday, July 31, 2016

Today -100: July 31, 1916: Are you a victim to optimism?

King Christian of Denmark thanks two schoolboys who saved him from drowning when his sailboat capsized. How do you reward schoolboys (whose age is not given)? Cigarette cases, of course.

Headline That Sounds Dirty But Isn’t of the Day -100:

The US sends Britain a note of protest over its blacklisting of some US companies under the Trading with the Enemy Act, which the note says is “inevitably and essentially inconsistent with the rights of the citizens of all nations not involved in the war.” Indeed, it is “inconsistent with that true justice, sincere amity, and impartial fairness which should characterize the dealing of friendly Governments with one another.”

DuPont is refusing to take any blame for the massive explosions yesterday, saying that once the munitions leave their factory, they’re someone else’s responsibility.

A new issue of the trench newspaper The Wipers Times (this issue called The Somme-Times) is out.

There was a young girl of the Somme,
 Who sat on a number five bomb,
   She thought ‘twas a dud ‘un,
 But it went off sudden–
 Her exit she made with aplomb!

To Minnie [As in the “moaning minnie,” the German trench mortars, Minenwerfer]

In days gone by some aeons ago
That name my youthful pulses stirred,
I thrilled whe’er she whispered low
Ran to her when her voice I heard.

Ah Minnie! how our feelings change,
For now I hear your voice with dread,
And hasten to get out of range
Ere you me on the landscape spread.

Your lightest whisper makes me thrill,
Your presence makes me hide my head,
Your voice can make me hasten still–
But ‘tis away from you instead.

You fickle jade! you traitorous minx!
We once exchanged love’s old sweet tales
Now where effulgent star-shell winks
Your raucous screech my ear assails.

No place is sacred, I declare,
Your manners most immodest are,
You force your blatant presence where
Maidens should be particular.

You uninvited do intrude,
You force an entrance to my couch,
Though if I’ve warning you’re about
I’ll not be there, for that I’ll vouch.

Name once most loved of all your sex,
Now hated with a loathing great,
When next my harassed soul you vex
You’ll get some back at any rate.

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