Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Kaiserstuhl? Me neither. It’s a range of hills in the state of Baden-Wurttemberg in southwest Germany, the name referring to King Otto III from 994, and literally means “King’s Chair”

Photo by Claudio Testa on Unsplash

2. Via Open Culture, the world’s oldest cookbook, which was published in 1643 in Japan, which was actually translated to English.

3. Via Atlas Obscura, archaeologists from the University of Warsaw have found walls for a church, portraits of the 12 Apostles in Sudan. This is particularly important because this relates back to the Kingdom of Makuria, which was a Christian kingdom that ran along the Nile River starting in the 4th century and lasting all of the way until the 15th century. That’s sort of insane to think there’s a kingdom out there that’s lasted that long, but I’ve never known about it.

4. Via The Smithsonian Magazine, divers have discovered an 80-foot ship beneath 16 feet of clay in the Nile River in the sunken city of the Thonis-Heracleion, the ship being both Egyptian and Greek in technique:

The ship’s design reflects a mixture of ancient Egyptian and Greek techniques. Its builders used mortise-and-tenon joints and constructed the vessel partly out of reused wood, suggesting that it was made in Egypt. The ship boasted both oars and a large sail; it had a flat bottom and keel, which would have allowed it to navigate the Nile and the delta where the river meets the Mediterranean Sea.

Franck Goddio, founding president of IEASM, says in a statement that finding intact remains of such ancient, fast ships is very rare. The only comparable Greek-style ship is the Marsala Ship, dated to 235 B.C.E., which archaeologists uncovered in western Sicily in 1971.

5. Via PetaPixel, artist Michael Ranger took the reflection from the high definition picture in Buzz Aldrin’s mask from the Apollo 11 mission.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Guatape? Me neither. Guatape is a town in Columbia and can be popular with tourists. There’s also this big rock there, la piedra, and it is 200 meters above the groudn and just sticks out of the ground.

Photo by Luisa Forero on Unsplash

2. Are you kidding me. A glass octopus. This is an animal I’ve never seen before and it’s amazing, via Colossal.

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3. Texas Monthly’s Casey Gerald on the greatness of Ft. Worth’s Leon Bridges. This is one of the best things I’ve read about a human in a really long time.

4. It wouldn’t be a Saturday Morning Links witout a link about a trek. Adventure Journal’s Jeff Moag on Neal Moore’s two year trek to journey across America in a canoe.

5. The Ringer’s Bryan Curtis on the retirement of DFW sports broadcaster Dale Hanson.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Phang Nga Bay? Me neither. You’ve probably seen pictures of Phang Nga Bay because it looks amazing and probably the set to some James Bond movie. The translation to Phang Bay apparently means “heathen, pagan, primitive people” as the area was originally inhibited by aboriginal people.

Photo by Abhishek Revis on Unsplash

2. On Thursday, July 8th, we were in Port Aransas, the wind was blowing maybe 15 miles an hour and the rain was coming down in sheets. With nothing else better to do I decided to run for half an hour. My wife decided to work out in the comfort of an exercise room and I took to the mean streets to run in the rain. I thought about running on the beach, but wet sand and pouring rain didn’t sound like a good combination. 4 miles at 8’17” with an average heart rate of 141 and an average power of 241.

By the time I finished, I was drenched (because of rain)waited a bit, put on some dry clothes, waited some more for the rain to stop and went to the beach a few hours later.

The next day, deciding that running in the pouring rain wasn’t enough, I decided to run on the beach in 20 mile an hour south winds, coming straight up the coast. The overall pace was 9’10” a mile for 5.5 miles, but the mile splits were hilarious. Against the wind, I was running 10’30” miles and with the wind, I clocked two 7 minute miles and one that went 7’15”. That’s how much the wind pushed me along. My average heart rate was 149 and average power was 220. I also managed to gain 571 feet despite running at sea level.

The next day, which was Saturday, I decided to do a relatively long run and ran basically 3 miles south along the beach and ran another mile past my entry point and finished with 7.5 miles with an average pace of 9’18”. Average heart rate was 144 and power was 213. I tried to maintain a 9’00” to 9’15” mile, not too fast, but not too slow. The last mile and a half the wind picked up and my average went from 9’12” to 9’46”.

I don’t write a ton about my running because it’s usually pretty boring, but the point with these three runs was that they were all pretty difficult in their own ways and despite being on vacation, I enjoyed doing these really difficult things. The sprints in the rain and the run against 20 mile an hour winds were especially tough, but the running with the wind, I felt like I was sprinting. An absolute joy in a ton of ways, I wasn’t any more tired, but I did get to run on the beach, something I’ve never done before.

3. I’ve mentioned before that Colossal is a terrific site for art, design, etc., and these drone shots straight above the pyramids are fantastic.

4. I’d never heard of albino redwoods and had also never heard that some people thought that these albino leaves on the redwoods were leaching off of the actual redwoods, but they may suck out harmful minerals to keep the redwoods healthy.

5. If you like nostalgia, this is for you. Gotham Canoe’s Bill Grueskin tells the tell of a 1973 road trip from Colorado to Canada and back.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Duino? Me neither. Duino is in the far northeastern portion of Italy, darn near in Slovenia and Croatia. In fact, the primary language was Slovenian up until the end of World War I. You can also pretty much walk the coast on the Rilke Trail, where it connects Duino and Sistiana.

Photo by brunetto ziosi on Unsplash

2. Slate’s Jordan Ellenberg writes about the golden ratio, which is probably two things you should know about math, which is pie (3.14) and the golden ratio’s value (1.618).

3. Afar’s Ann Babe talks to Tom Turcich and his mission to circumnavigate the world by foot with his dog Savannah. Not continuous, because of a handful of things, but he sounds determined to finish. I like the idea of knowing what you’re going to do every day. Just go walk.

12/12/16 Day 612. The great thing about walking everyday is that despite being exposed to the elements I have a purpose each and every day; walk. I never fall asleep unsure what I’ll do with tomorrow. I know I’ll learn a little more and grow [a] little more with each new area I pass into.

4. Sidetracked Magazine and Project 282 as Emily Scott spent a 120 days into climbing every Munroe in Scotland. A Munro is a mountain over 3,000 ft.

5. There’s a huge fence in Australia. Huge. I think it is the longest fence in the world, intended to keep out the dingoes, but the problem with keeping a natural predator out is that you change the ecosystem. Now, farmers want the dingoes back on the property. Without the dingoes, the kangaroos were overpopulated, natural vegetation was sparse, the pastures were overgrazed, and the cattle couldn’t survive. And if you really want to go down a rabbit hole, check out the Great Emu War where the emus basically won. Possibly one of those situations where trying to control something that had developed a pretty great ecosystem was maybe already working way before that ever happened. Or maybe farming and grazing of things wasn’t what was really intended. Regardless, that fence has been up for over 100 years and maybe the thought that the fence does more harm than good is changing.

Saturday morning links

1. Ever heard of Mpumalanga? Me neither. It’s a province in South Africa that means means, “where the sun rises” which is awesome. Mpumalanga (/əmˌpuːməˈlɑːŋɡə/) borders Eswatini and Mozambique and we’ve talked about the Drakensberg and that’s part of that as well.

Photo by Nadine Venter on Unsplash

2. The always entertaining and through provoking Beau Miles on his 4-day paddle to work. What usually takes 40 minutes takes significantly longer and Miles pondering that river he grew up on. Miles has started exploring the area around his home with significant intensity as the pandemic started, which includes him walking to work and now, paddling to work. What starts out as Miles enjoying pushing himself through some uncomfortable situations turns into a bit of disgust at what we’ve done to a river (this is the collective “we”). Comparing the river to a digestive tract and then to watch Miles paddle through the muck is about as accurate a thing as you’ll watch.

3. Ever wanted to know where all the lighthouses in the world are? Well, you are in luck because here’s a lighthouse map from Geodienst and it is super cool (dated reference, but don’t care).Europe is covered with lighthouses, but North America? Not so much.

4. This is terrific. From Texas Monthly’s Christian Wallace, the story of Bass Reeves, a legendary U.S. Marshal and is widely believed to be the origin of the Lone Ranger. Reeves was also African-American and one of the first African-Americans to wear that badge.

Reeves is just shy of his forty-sixth birthday and has worked as a deputy marshal in the Indian Territory for nine years. He knows this sprawling territory, as he likes to say, “like a cook knows her kitchen.” As he and his posseman, John Cantrell, draw nearer to their destination—Jim Bywater’s general store, near the town of Woodford—Reeves slows the pace. With luck, this is where they’ll find their man.

The fugitive, Jim Webb, is no stranger to Reeves. The year before, Webb had drifted north from Texas to the Chickasaw Nation, where he’d found work as foreman of the sprawling Washington-McLish ranch. Webb was hotheaded and mean, a tyrant who rode herd over some 45 cowboys. One day that spring, a reverend named William Steward was performing a controlled burn on his property when the fire accidentally spread to the neighboring Washington-McLish ranch and scorched some of its grazing pastures. A fuming Webb rode over to confront the circuit preacher and left having murdered him.

A few days after the killing, Reeves and a posseman arrived at the Washington-McLish ranch disguised as trail-driving cowboys. As was custom at the time, they asked for breakfast, and Webb allowed the men to come inside and eat. But the foreman was suspicious of the strangers; Webb and his right-hand man, Frank Smith, drew their sidearms and kept a close eye on them. Reeves kept up the charade until, for a moment, something else caught Webb’s attention. Reeves sprang up, gripped Webb by the throat with one hand, and pulled his six-shooter on him with the other. Smith wheeled around and fired two shots at Reeves. Both went wide. Reeves answered with a single report from his Colt. He did not miss. Webb gurgled a surrender, while his gut-shot compatriot bled on the floor. Webb was put in irons, and the men started the long trip back to the Fort Smith jail, known as “Hell on the Border.” Smith died of his wounds by the time the posse reached the Chickasaw capitol of Tishomingo. His bones lie there still.

5. With the Fourth of July right around the corner, I had never heard of the Serapis flag.

This flag was thrown in 1779 in the Battle of Flamborough Head with U.S. Navy Captain John Paul Jones as he captured the Serapis and was flown from that ship. Benjamin Franklin had described the flag and so this flag is also known as the Franklin Flag

It is with pleasure that we acquaint your excellency that the flag of the United States of America consists of thirteen stripes, alternately red, white, and blue; a small square in the upper angle, next the flagstaff, is a blue field, with thirteen white stars, denoting a new constellation.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Flamborough Head? Me neither. Flamborough Head is in Yorkshire, England and one of those cliffs with pure white cliffs. Flamborough Head is also famous for a battle in September of 1779 where John Paul Jones, fighting for the Continental Navy, and a few British escort vessels. Jones is the father of the U.S. Navy.

Photo by 43 Clicks North on Unsplash

2. Colossal is a really fun website. It’s got a ton of photos of interesting things. You could scroll for hours I think. So there’s this building in Reno, a brewery of all things, that has an enclave and so an artist drew a stack of records and it’s a great use of space that would have probably otherwise been wasted. If you’re one of those people that doesn’t get “art” checking out Colossal is a good way to take something in that’s not really far out there.

3. Via Narratively, the story of Sandy Gray, a bus driver who was fishing in Scotland in August of 1930, and is the person for reporting the Loch Ness monster.

4. A group of French national team fans arrived in Bucharest and were supposed to be in Budapest. Of course Bucharest is in Romania and Budapest is in Hungary and it’s about a 9 hour drive from the other. The French fans stayed in Bucharest and hung out.

5. The best thing I’ve read all week. From the New York Times, a New Jersey Catholic school brought back a mandatory hike across the Appalachian Trail, the hike is for freshmen who finished their first year and they hike 50 miles over 5 days (this year they only did 40 miles over 4 days). Most of the students are people of color, but that’s not what this is about, this is about a rite of passage. Great photos and great story-telling.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Passy National Nature Reserve? Me neither, but it is a 4,240 acre park in eastern France. Actually, if you travel to Samoens, which is a commune in the French alps, an has a large number of limestone quarries and this area of the world is known for their stonemasons, and is only 70 kilometers from Geneva and is somewhat sandwiched in-between Switzerland and Italy.

Photo by Baptiste Gousset on Unsplash

2. From the New York Times, Marty Bluewater has been the only person who has been allowed to live on Protection Island, consisting of approximately 370 acres and 2 miles long, for the past 50 years. The pictures alone are worth click.

3. Via Narratively’s Brent Crane, Lamar Marshall is single-handedly re-mapping the Cherokee trails that had previously been wiped off maps.

4. These are three stories from Good Beer Hunting and all three stories are from different places in the world. All are about brewing something and what I love is that despite the distances, we all pretty well do the same thing: Copenhagen, Denmark; Kesennuma, Japan; and Kittery, Maine. I also love the photos, they’re all terrific and so even if you don’t read the article, the photos are worth the click over as well.

5. The Ringer’s Brian Phillips and Den of Geek’s David Crow with two terrific deep dives on Indiana Jones, Raiders of the Lost Ark. This is a movie we’ve watched with the boys and it definitely holds up. Both links are terrific essays that deep-dive into the movie. What was great to me about this movie is that the Ark of the Covenant was real and that is something that had never once occurred to me as a kid watching this movie in the theaters. I had never conceptualized the Ark that’s what struck me and what I love about that movie.

Saturday morning links

1. Ever heard of Val Gardena? Me neither. Val Gardena is a valley in the Dolomites of the Tyrol region in Italy. This scene is fairly iconic I think, it’s one that I’ve seen a handful of times, the sheer of that mountain that just drops off is quite the scene. There’s a heavy German influence despite the valley being in Italy.

Photo by Warre Vyncke on Unsplash

There’s a great Rick Steves episode on that region.

2. From GQ’s David Alm on a group of elite Ethiopian runners who can’t go home, largely because of the conflict (really ethnic cleansing as the article states) of the Tigray Region. I have read a ton about this, largely because my son is from Ethiopia, but to say that I understand this would not be true. Maybe that’s the thing, you’re not supposed to understand the “why” of an ethnic cleansing. While they are here, they live together and make the best of a situation as they seek asylum.

In addition to supporting his roommates, Fikadu sends money each month to his wife and five brothers back in Ethiopia. With whatever he has left, he treats himself: He likes designer clothes and wears a new Apple watch. An energetic 28-year-old with a steadfast gaze and the charisma of an actor, Fikadu is committed to living with his roommates, despite his healthy income. “In Ethiopia,” he says, “we have a saying: ‘A house is not yours. A house is God’s house.’ You can live in it, but when you die the house will stay there. The house is not going to die with you. So in my culture we say a house is God’s house. Everybody can come and you can live together.”

3. Outside Online’s David Kushner on a young diver who finds a prosthetic leg at the bottom of the ocean in the Gulf of Mexico and the boy’s journey to find the owner.

4. Longread’s Paul Brown on how four Americans robbed the Bank of england in Victorian London.

On April 18, 1872, Austin Bidwell walked into Green & Son tailors on London’s renowned Savile Row and ordered eight bespoke suits, two topcoats, and a luxurious dressing gown. Bidwell was 26 years old, 6ft tall, and handsomely groomed with a waxed mustache and bushy side-whiskers. If the accent didn’t give it away, his eye-catching western hat marked him out as an American — a rich American. London tradesmen called Americans with bulges of money in their pockets “Silver Kings,” and they were most welcome in upmarket establishments like Green & Son, which charged as much for the strength of their reputations as for the quality of their goods.

5. I am here for this. Capture Atlas with the best Milky Way photographs of the year. One of my favorite things to look at, especially because I follow NASA on Insta, is the Milky Way and stars and galaxies and find the prospect of “that” entirely amazing.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of the Lofoten Islands? Me neither. But I’d guess you’ve seen commercials or pictures of this place. Lofoten is in Norway and inside the Arctic Circle, and they are a small archipelago surrounded by these huge mountains. I think there’s a Volkswagon commercial or something that shows how you can get around on these islands.

Photo by Ivan Bertona on Unsplash

2. I always hear that clock of mine ticking away when I write these things, but this is definitely one of those dreams of mine, to hike the Sentiero Italia (Trail Italy), 7,000 kilometers across the entire country of Italy and it looks absolutely amazing. I also love the mountains of Italy, especially in the northern region. I realize I can’t hike for 3 months to accomplish this, but I could take a week at one point.

3. It’s time we think about death, especially if you haven’t already. I’ve mentioned this a lot, but being an estate planning attorney, I’ve thought quite a bit about death, it actually is a huge part of my life because I deal with people dying all of the time. Outside Online’s Michael Easter writes about his trip to Bhutan:

“You Americans are usually ignorant,” he said, using a word often seen as an insult in the United States, but that by definition means “lacking awareness.” In Bhutan and other Buddhist countries, “ignorance” is the rough English translation of “Avidyā.” That’s a Sanskrit word that means having a misunderstanding of the true nature of your reality and the truth of your impermanence. “Most Americans are unaware of how good you have it, and so many of you are miserable and chasing the wrong things.

“You act like life is fulfilling a checklist. ‘I need to get a good wife or husband, then I get a good car, then I get a good house, then I get a promotion, then I get a better car and a better house and I make a name for myself and then …’” he rattled off more accomplishments that fulfill the American Dream. “But this plan will never materialize perfectly. And even if it does, then what? You don’t settle, you add more items to the checklist. It is the nature of desire to get one thing and immediately want the next thing, and this cycle of accomplishment and acquisitions won’t necessarily make you happy—if you have ten pairs of shoes you want 11 pairs.”

The problem with this checklist of things (which I’m completely guilty of as well) is that we’re always filling our lives with things, things to do or things in general and that’s maybe not contemplative for a fulfilled life. I know for me, the further I get away from that idea, the better my life seems to be, or the more appreciative my life seems. And Easter further explores this idea that death is a cliff that we’re all headed towards, no matter who you are, and facing that reality is a good thing.

4. I totally had crushes on the girls from “A Different World” and I am almost positive that I may have been one of the few people that I grew up with that had that thought and I am sure I never expressed that to anyone. That was appointment television for me and via Vanity Fair, an oral history of that show brings back a handful of memories. The other thing that this introduced to me was the idea of a historically black college, something I had no idea about and am not even sure that this was something that was intended, but it certainly registered in my brain. I also wanted Dwayne Wayne’s glasses.

5. Via Eater’s Kieran Dahl, she visits Monowi, Nebraska, a one-person and one-restaurant town (yes, 87-year old Elsie Eiler lives there and has a restaurant). I remember growing up and in my town I felt like there was only one restaurant option, Moon’s Cafe, where it was basically a cafeteria style restaurant. Moon’s is still there in my town and there are now more restaurants. I also tend to think that my parents never ate out and when we did, it was 7 of us so a place like Moon’s where there was hardly ever anyone there, made it easy. My town also always had a Dairy Queen, so that sort of counts too, but for whatever reason we never ate there.

Saturday Morning Links

1. Ever heard of Na Pali? Me neither. It’s part of the coast of Kauai in Hawaii. According to the state park website, the “pali” are cliffs that run along the coastline. Breathtaking to say the least.

2. This Twitter thread about Bulgarian soccer is a terrific look at what soccer means to communities. And you get to look at Bulgaria, a place that you probably hardly ever think about.

3. I can’t say that I was a huge Charles Grodin fan, but knew that he was really talented and funny. I had no idea that he wrote this first person account of his one-night affair with Miss Piggy. The writing is terrific.

4. From Outside Online’s Brendan Leonard, a pictorial on the type of people that run laps in parking lots in order to have a round number of miles is: a) “That’s the dumbest fucking thing ever”; b) “oh, I do that too”; c) (both of the above). I do this all of the time and relate to Leonard on a handful of levels.

5. This is one of my favorite websites, Cool Tools, and the owner of the site oftentimes gives unsolicited advice and here are 99 bits of unsolicited advice:

• Assume anyone asking for your account information for any reason is guilty of scamming you, unless proven innocent. The way to prove innocence is to call them back, or login to your account using numbers or a website that you provide, not them. Don’t release any identifying information while they are contacting you via phone, message or email. You must control the channel.

• Sustained outrage makes you stupid.

• Be strict with yourself and forgiving of others. The reverse is hell for everyone.

• Your best response to an insult is “You’re probably right.” Often they are.

• The worst evils in history have always been committed by those who truly believed they were combating evil. Beware of combating evil.

• If you can avoid seeking approval of others, your power is limitless.

• When a child asks an endless string of “why?” questions, the smartest reply is, “I don’t know, what do you think?”

• To be wealthy, accumulate all those things that money can’t buy.

• Be the change you wish to see.

• When brainstorming, improvising, jamming with others, you’ll go much further and deeper if you build upon each contribution with a playful “yes — and” example instead of a deflating “no — but” reply.

• Work to become, not to acquire.

• Don’t loan money to a friend unless you are ready to make it a gift.

• On the way to a grand goal, celebrate the smallest victories as if each one were the final goal. No matter where it ends you are victorious.

• Calm is contagious.

• Even a foolish person can still be right about most things. Most conventional wisdom is true.

• Always cut away from yourself.

• Show me your calendar and I will tell you your priorities. Tell me who your friends are, and I’ll tell you where you’re going.

• When hitchhiking, look like the person you want to pick you up.

• Contemplating the weaknesses of others is easy; contemplating the weaknesses in yourself is hard, but it pays a much higher reward.

• Worth repeating: measure twice, cut once.

• Your passion in life should fit you exactly; but your purpose in life should exceed you. Work for something much larger than yourself.

• If you can’t tell what you desperately need, it’s probably sleep.

• When playing Monopoly, spend all you have to buy, barter, or trade for the Orange properties. Don’t bother with Utilities.

• If you borrow something, try to return it in better shape than you received it. Clean it, sharpen it, fill it up.

• Even in the tropics it gets colder at night than you think. Pack warmly.

• To quiet a crowd or a drunk, just whisper.

• Writing down one thing you are grateful for each day is the cheapest possible therapy ever.

• When someone tells you something is wrong, they’re usually right. When someone tells you how to fix it, they’re usually wrong.

• If you think you saw a mouse, you did. And, if there is one, there are more.

• Money is overrated. Truly new things rarely need an abundance of money. If that was so, billionaires would have a monopoly on inventing new things, and they don’t. Instead almost all breakthroughs are made by those who lack money, because they are forced to rely on their passion, persistence and ingenuity to figure out new ways. Being poor is an advantage in innovation.

• Ignore what others may be thinking of you, because they aren’t.

• Avoid hitting the snooze button. That’s just training you to oversleep.

• Always say less than necessary.

• You are given the gift of life in order to discover what your gift *in* life is. You will complete your mission when you figure out what your mission is. This is not a paradox. This is the way.

• Don’t treat people as bad as they are. Treat them as good as you are.