I’ve started into a routine where I use my half-hour commute every day to *expand my mind* (it’s important to stay active as you get older, guys). So I will read while I am sitting on the train and pop in a podcast while I am walking from the station. I love me some NPR (I need a shirt that says Peter Sagal is my homeboy), but I like to mix it up with stories from The Moth or with my new favorite podcast, Stuff You Missed in History Class.
You guys. YOU GUYS. History is so freakin’ interesting! And I honestly learn so much every time I listen to this one. The best part is that I will share it in my staff meeting as my “high” for the week and therefore impress/disgust everyone with my listening skills For your benefit, I have culled a few of my favorite facts I have recently learned. You’re welcome.
- Michaelangelo wore boots made out of dogskin for months at a time and when he would finally take them off, he would peel off a layer of skin with the boot.
- Edgar Allan Poe (who, as much as UVa wishes to claim was an alum judging by their bookshop, actually only went there for a year) MAY HAVE DIED OF RABIES. It was claimed he died of alcoholism, but considering he was not drunk or have a lick of alcohol in his system at the time, that is debatable. During the four days that Poe was in the hospital, he was hallucinating and confused before falling quiet and dying; in the periods when he was lucid, he refused to drink water (hydrophobia, y’all!). While he had no bite marks, you can also be infected with rabies for a YEAR before showing any symptoms. So I probably have that.
- Two awesome people to know: Charley Pankhurst and Nellie Bly. Charley was born Charlotte in 1812 but lived his life as a man; the fact that he was biologically female was not discovered until his death. Charley voted in California in 1868, making him the first female to vote in that state. Way to go, you! Also, Nellie Bly in general is a kick-ass lady. You should definitely read more about her, but to sum up: she was a female reporter in the late 1800s-early 1900s who, among other things, committed herself to an insane asylum to report on the horrific conditions; beat the Around The World in 80 Days by traveling the distance in 72 days, 6 hours, 11 minutes, and 14 seconds; and then landed a millionaire who was 40 years older than her.
Nothing else really important to say except history rocks.