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Heroes Community > Other Side of the Monitor > Thread: So Consis, what are we going to talk about?
Thread: So Consis, what are we going to talk about? This thread is 2 pages long: 1 2 · NEXT»
Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 04, 2006 03:47 AM
Edited by Binabik at 08:13, 07 Jul 2006.

So Consis, what are we going to talk about?

By popular demand, and the recent lack of quality threads in The Other Side, me and Consis are going to talk about something meaningful. But we don't know what it is yet.

If any of the old debate team want to contribute by talking about an unknown important subject, raise your hand. If nothing else, this thread can be a reunion of sorts.

PH just ran off. Get back here PH and say something to show off your knowledge of history. I want to know why the US and Canada are two countries. The two areas were settled by pretty much the same peoples. Did the ones in present day Canada not want to participate in the revolution or what? (If you stop in, I promise not to call the British fags any more)

Gootch? Are you still logged in? Stop in the thread and just say "Bah"! Followed by something sarcastic with a bit of truth.

PM, stop in and say Hi. We did the 1st and 2nd amendment. How about the 3rd. What do you think of the new Supreme Court Justices?

Dingo, put out that joint and get in here. It's summer and you can't snowboard anyway.

Shiva? Whatever it is you have to say, you're wrong.

Svarog, are you really gone for good or just lurking? Any good commie wouldn't let a little thing like censorship stop him.

Wolfman, are you gone for good too, or just out riding the range somewhere?

Of course everyone else is welcome too.

Is that enough for a start Consis?

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Consis
Consis


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Of Ruby
posted July 04, 2006 05:20 AM
Edited by Consis at 05:21, 04 Jul 2006.

LoL!

Great start my friend. Yeah I think Svarog is gone for good. And don't worry about PrivateHudson, he only jumps in a discussion for referencing factual historical battles and their details. For this reason, he is always welcome. Everyone else you mentioned is still here but mostly lurking. Even bort is still here but he is trying to sit firm with his last words in Turban Tribunal. I think he's phasing himself out. People will join when they feel compelled to. I'm not worried about it at all.

With regard to the third branch of our government . . . I do believe our founders understood that even a panel of judges could act like a dictator regime the same as a group of congressmen and women. And so they began instituting our system of checks and balances.

Today's poignant issues before the high courts are erroniously presented as Gay Marriage and Abortion rights. I have to be honest about this . . . I really don't care. I'm more concerned with gas prices, cost efficient fuels, and recycling. That whole "Lost in Space" movie was an interesting concept. Matt Leblanc did ok in it. My immediate concerns are in regards to how I'm going to outfit or re-equip my van and car to be hybrid vehicles. Our family greatly depends on our two vehicles for many different things. I watched CSPAN debates regarding ethanol and hydrogen based fuels . . . something about making corn farmers the new oil overlords or so.

Any thoughts are welcome.
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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 04, 2006 09:36 AM
Edited by Binabik at 09:46, 04 Jul 2006.

I don't know if you remember, or even noticed. I don't really keep up with facts and figures  and news. I tend to know a little about a lot of subjects, but know a lot about very few. I discuss things more by what seems reasonable at the time I say it, rather than stating facts. In other words, I make it up as I go along. And sometimes what seems reasonable one day seems like total BS the next day, but hey, I like to throw ideas around.

Also, I think we're alike in that the process of writing is a goal unto itself. When I begin writing, it takes on a life of it's own, and the words go wherever they choose....even if I try to make them go in another direction.

As for the early days of our country....BTW, happy 230th birthday America...just a young pup, but probably about 200 years older than the founders expected it to last.

I think Franklin was one of the ones who were instrumental in pushing through the Constitution. The founders suddenly found themselves with a new country on their hands. I'm not sure if they really expected to win against the British, and they almost didn't. They may have talked it up bravely for the sake of morale. But I'm sure in private they had serious doubts. After all, they had just told their rightful ruler and the king of perhaps the most powerful country in the world to **** off.

I think Franklin's argument was basically this. Hey, we have a new country on our hands. Now we have to do something with it. And we need to do it soon. We all disagree on how it's to be done. We've already worked out a lot of compromises. We are never going to agree on everything. We are never going to make it perfect. But we have to do something. It may not last long, but we need to sign the damn thing soon and worry about changing it later. Later, we can even throw the whole thing out and start over. But it's time to sign it and give it a try.

They never really expected it to last. But here we are 230 years later and it's still in place.....at least in words, if not in spirit.

Throughout history, and within our own lifetimes, there are very few ideas that are truly new or unique. With the founders, it was no different. I'm not well versed on history, but I'm not sure if there was anything truly unique in the Constitution, certainly not much. The idea of division of power was not unique. It goes back thousands of years. The founders took bits and pieces of what they knew and put them together into a package. Sure, they put their own spin on it, but it was mostly what they knew from past experiments in systems of government.

There's been a lot of talk about the Bush administration and their power grab. The attempt to pull power away from Congress and give it to the Executive branch. I can't stand Bush, so I hate to agree with him, but.....well I don't agree with him, but maybe it's just because it's him doing it, and I would agree if it was someone else. The point is that 20 years ago I strongly felt too much power lay with Congress. In many ways they dictated how things were going to be. Because of the division of power they could only dictate so far, but they pushed as hard and as far as they could.

Checks and balances is a fragile concept. Where does checks and balances within the government end, and outright opposition between the branches begin? It seems to me that opposition has been the rule for a long time. To me, checks and balances means each branch does it's intended job, but under the watchful eye of the other branches, and the public.

What is the intended purpose of the presidential veto? Is it supposed to be used as a threat to get his way? Or is presidential approval supposed to be more of a rubber stamp, with the veto used only as a preventitive against a potential tyrannical legislature? You could ask the same question of presidential appointments to the courts. Should the Senate be sort of a rubber stamp, but with a watchful eye against tyrany? Or should it be like some of the court appointments in the 80's when it amounted to the Senate telling the president to provide a list, and the Senate will pick one?

It's the whole idea of "checking on" the other branch vs "opposition" to the other branch. Is Bush making a power grab? I think so. But is that bad? Is he restoring the balance that had previously shifted the other direction? I don't know.

--------------
Yea, Consis, I hear what you say about "I really don't care". I think about this stuff, but it's not like it consumes me. You're absolutely right that it's the day-to-day stuff that makes up our lives. The lawn needs mowing, and I need to get groceries. And whatever the government does isn't going to change that. Except for having a general idea what's going on, and watching long term trends, I pretty much just go about my life.

Hey, remember when the Other Side was full of this stuff on a daily basis? That wasn't really very long ago.
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Consis
Consis


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Of Ruby
posted July 04, 2006 05:33 PM

Yep

I remember when this sub forum was filled talkative folks. I'm a very patient person though, and I'm willing to wait for others to come along and add their perspective. I agree with your analysis of post generation. It does seem to take on a life of its own as I type it.

With regard to the founding of our country, I truly believe LUCK played a third of the role in creating America. I define "luck" as good timing. Our little revolutionary war was indeed very little, hinged on the final French fleet support, and ran on the back of all the mayhem in western India. Our ideals are great and I love them, true enough, but you don't hear people say hardly anything about these things when they're celebrating the 4th of July. And then there are some who say it was a miracle from top to bottom; from the rabble rousers on the streets of Boston to the global geo-political atmosphere ripe for revolution. And what do they call it you ask? *gags* 'Ordained by God' . . .
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privatehudson
privatehudson


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The Ultimate Badass
posted July 04, 2006 11:46 PM

Quote:
PH just ran off. Get back here PH and say something to show off your knowledge of history. I want to know why the US and Canada are two countries. The two areas were settled by pretty much the same peoples. Did the ones in present day Canada not want to participate in the revolution or what? (If you stop in, I promise not to call the British fags any more)


Well according to South Park Canada isn't a real country anyway

Roughly speaking (baring in mind this is outside my normal period of interest) I think it was something to do with the fact that the 13 areas in what became the Eastern USA were colonies whereas the areas that became Eastern Canada had a different status - Quebec for example being a province. The British made some attempts to placate the French Canadians before the Revolution which lead to them being more Loyalist than you might expect. Quebec refused an offer to join the 13 colonies for example. Some "British" Canadians supported the revolution, angered by the favouritsm shown to the Catholic French speakers but generally it gained little support. It probably didn't help that the Revolutionaries under Arnold failed in an attempt to invade and occupy Quebec either, therefore failing to support any Revolutionaries in the region.
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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 05, 2006 05:31 AM
Edited by Binabik at 05:35, 05 Jul 2006.

I wasn't aware of the different status between the areas in Canada and the ones in the US.

It's weird when I was in school, the history classes generally were either American history or world history. American history was about the US and didn't include Canada except when it directly impacted our own history, such as struggles over the border location. On the other hand, world history tended strongly toward Europe, the Mediterranean regions and Asia Minor, and to a lesser degree Asia and Africa. But it didn't usually include either of the Americas, except during the time of exploration and a little on the Spanish conquerors. So the histories of Canada, Central and S. America were barely touched on.

But then, it's been almost 35 years since the last time I took history, so my classes might have covered all kinds of things I don't remember. Plus, like a lot of kids I hated history, especially when I was younger. I find it interesting now, but I think the way they taught history was terrible and turned kids away from it. Memorizing names and dates really sucks when you're a kid. Something more narrative would have been much better in my opinion.

Not only was Canada rarely included in American history, but parts of the current US weren't included much either. It was all taught as British settlements. Florida was claimed by Spain, but it wasn't British and therefore not part of our own history. We bought the Louisiana Territory from France, but didn't learn anything of French settlements in that area (or I just forgot it). I assume there were a fair number of French there because you can still hear it in the accent. A strong Cajun accent is barely understandable as English. Same thing with Texas. We learned nothing of it until the Spanish American War. When there were actually long term Spanish settlements there. Again, they weren't British and therefore it wasn't our history.

Maybe others had a different experience, but that's how I learned it.

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Frick
Frick


Known Hero
and eternal n00b.
posted July 05, 2006 12:30 PM

Quote:


It's weird when I was in school, the history classes generally were either American history or world history. American history was about the US and didn't include Canada except when it directly impacted our own history, such as struggles over the border location. On the other hand, world history tended strongly toward Europe, the Mediterranean regions and Asia Minor, and to a lesser degree Asia and Africa. But it didn't usually include either of the Americas, except during the time of exploration and a little on the Spanish conquerors. So the histories of Canada, Central and S. America were barely touched on.




I know basicly nothing about US/Canadian history (I'm from Sweden, so it wasn't exactly a high priority at school. In fact, all I know about the revolution and stuff (the colonization and so on) is what I've learned from movies like Ravenous ), so I won't comment anything on that matter.

I think the reason that World History tends to Europe, Mediterrean and Asia Minor is simply that the western civilization (you know, Europe, America..) was founded there. We are, IMO, pretty much offsprings to ancient Greece and it's philosophy, and ancient Greece was an offspring to the older nations there (Medes/Persia, Babylon, Assyria, Egypt..) so it's natural that we read about it. Not that Asian/African/Pacific history isn't interesting, we just aren't very influenced by it, other than the tales the Polo's and others bought us.

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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 05, 2006 01:15 PM

True, but it struck me as odd when I realized I had no idea how the US and Canada split when we are neighbors and share the same history.

I always wondered if the Europeans realized that Americans thought of themselves that way. That we are Europeans and not something apart, at least in the historical sense. It's not like our history starts with the American Revolution. That was only one point in history.

The history of Europe was one of almost constant expansion and moving of borders. That thing called the Atlantic slowed things down. But when they got past that obstacle, the expansion continued in the Americas. If the Atlantic was a river, the Roman or Greek Empires would have completely overrun the lightly populated Americas. Who knows, Maro Polo may have gone the other direction. All the ocean did was delay things and turn the ambitions of Europe to the east and south.

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Vlaad
Vlaad


Admirable
Legendary Hero
ghost of the past
posted July 05, 2006 02:40 PM
Edited by Vlaad at 14:53, 05 Jul 2006.

Quote:
I think the reason that World History tends to Europe, Mediterrean and Asia Minor is simply that the western civilization (you know, Europe, America..) was founded there. We are, IMO, pretty much offsprings to ancient Greece and it's philosophy, and ancient Greece was an offspring to the older nations there (Medes/Persia, Babylon, Assyria, Egypt..) so it's natural that we read about it. Not that Asian/African/Pacific history isn't interesting, we just aren't very influenced by it, other than the tales the Polo's and others bought us.
It might be a simplified explanation, but I agree with you. On the other hand, does it mean that in time the American history will find its rightful place in Serbian textbooks?

For the time being, only a single lesson on the War of Independence and a scattering of paragraphs linked with WWII are dedicated to the United States. America is discovered, becomes independent, Pearl Harbour is attacked, the allies invade Normandy and drop the bomb on Japan. I must have learned more from Italian comics. Thus American rise to power remains a complete mystery.

Back on topic, not only does such factualism, void of any interpretation or coherency, result in boring lectures, but also blocks the big picture. Truth be told, there is also a question of teaching methods, but the pattern is obviously similar around the world. I understand the emphasis is on memorazing rather than comprehension. The 19th century understanding of nations doesn't help either.

EDIT: In order to confirm this theory, here's a question for all of you: What did you learn about the Balkans at school? No googling or wikipedia, please - anything off the top of your head.
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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 06, 2006 04:13 AM

Sounds like memorization is pretty much universal.

Quote:
What did you learn about the Balkans at school?
What did I learn, or what do I remember? I remember nothing at all. It was here at HC that I realized the Balkans weren't where I thought they were. I thought the Balkans were the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea (Latvia, etc). I still don't know what the Balkans include. Except sort of eastern Europe, but not far eastern. I assume I learned it in school sometime, but forgot. We pretty much covered the history of all of Europe, but concentrated on the Mediterranean, south of the Alps, southwestern Europe, and Britain. Northern and eastern Europe wasn't covered nearly as much. Scandinavia almost not at all. And I remember almost none of it.

Quote:
Thus American rise to power remains a complete mystery.
I'm not sure when America was considered a world power and can only speculate what the cause was. It was probably several things. It was rich in resources, had good farmland, fairly decent climate, and lots of room.

The current day status as a power was heavily influenced by the two world wars. By this time the US was already industrialized. Prior to direct involvement in WWII, the US had already ramped up industry to supply the war effort in Europe. They built thousands of ships for the purpose, hence the German attacks on American shipping. I don't really know what those ships carried, but that's a LOT of ships, which means a lot of supplies.

When the US got directly involved, the industry expanded even more. And more money was poured into military research, which usually finds civilian applications. When the war ended, all that industry was still in place. It was largely converted to peacetime manufacturing, which helped fuel the economy.

What I think was probably a much bigger impact from the war was indirect. 100s of thousands of men returned from the war. They were offered free college education. And they even got a small salary to pay living expenses. By the late 40s - early 50s, there was a huge increase in college educated men. The economy completely boomed through the 50s, 60s, and early 70s. Among other things, these were the men who came up with things like transistors and microprocessors.

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Frick
Frick


Known Hero
and eternal n00b.
posted July 06, 2006 06:37 AM

An interesting side-note on the post-WWII-boom in the US was that it brought Japan to sparkling life, economicly/industrial speaking.

I was supposed to write something .. uhm, clever () here, but I do that later on.

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Consis
Consis


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Of Ruby
posted July 06, 2006 07:19 AM
Edited by Consis at 07:22, 06 Jul 2006.

Hmm . . .

Quote:
It brought Japan to sparkling life.

Forgive me if I gag in response to this comment. (respectfully of course) I don't think Japan could be characterized as being "sparkling life" at that time. I find it hard to believe the only nation in the world to have been wrought by the very fires of hell itself could be characterized as "back to sparkling life", simply because it pulled its economy back to working order, some 10-20 years later. I have yet to see the wisdom in dropping those God-forsaken bombs. I don't care what the statistics say about possible invasion casualties! God help those that were responsible for dropping those bombs. May he have mercy on their eternally tormented souls.

In addition . . . I have only just read an article, about 15 minutes ago, saying that Japan is the most elderly nation in the world with a 5th of its entire population over the age of 60. At the moment it would seem it is still not back to sparkling life. I think it's a highly sophisticated socialially complex nation of societal customs and respect for the aged wise man/woman. In fact it's suffrage is actually 21 yrs.

I would like to characterize Japan as having a cultural strength not seen by the naked eye. I think it's a gift to the spectrum of humanity. For all its complexities and cultural rules, it does still seem to inspire self confidence and respect for the Earth. And it certainly hasn't forgotten what happened . . . when we all first witnessed the next greatest power the modern world has ever seen in the form of a weapon molded in the shape of a bomb and wielded by none other than fellow human beings.
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Frick
Frick


Known Hero
and eternal n00b.
posted July 06, 2006 03:11 PM

I didn't say anything about the very old population there (they've had those problems for some years now) or anything else. What I said was:

"it brought Japan to sparkling life, economicly/industrial speaking."

Sure, they had/have a lot of problems, but when you look at the nation from a economy/industial point of view, US DID help them out after WWII. And they're still "a major economic global power" (Wikipedia). I think it shows a lot about the Japanese people that they actually were able to build up "a major economic global power" in a couple of decades after those horrible bombs. I admire them for that.

Wikipedia:
Due to financial support from the United States and much hard work, Japan's economy surpassed the rest of the world in the Seventies.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seventies#In_Southeast_Asia

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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 07, 2006 08:01 AM
Edited by Binabik at 08:03, 07 Jul 2006.

The US did help rebuild Japan after the war. The way I've heard it, Japan ended up with more modern infrastructure and factories compared to the aging US industries. That gave Japan an advantage, but I don't know how much. I imagine it took a long time for the rebuilding and getting the industries running smoothly.

I don't know about the in-between years, but the Japanese economy really started taking off in the mid-late 70s.

During the "oil crisis" of the early 70s, Americans started looking for higher gas mileage cars. Some downsized to smaller American cars, but many bought German and Japanese cars.

When I was a kid it was common for people to say something was "made in Japan". It was kind of a joke and meant the product was cheaply made and low quality. And most of the products from Asia, including Japan, really were low quality at that time.

It wasn't a large number at first, but the people who bought the Japanese cars during the oil crisis started realizing they weren't low quality. And the cars were getting better through the 60s and 70s. They were higher quality than American cars. When people started catching on, they bought more and more Japanese cars.

At the same time, the autoworker unions in the US were very strong. The US automakers were beginning to feel the impact of Japanese cars, but not too bad yet. The Unions were going on strike for higher wages at the same time. The two things together started hurting the automakers. The Union workers refused to admit the Japanese cars were higher quality. The unions were strong, and the workers were not very concerned about quality. Why should they care? The union would protect them if anyone complained about the work they did.

I don't know if the automakers themselves admitted the Japanese cars were higher quality or not. But what I think they did believe was that Americans didn't care that much about quality. Americans liked their big cars, and I think the automakers felt safe that most Americans would stick with American cars. And the unions felt the same way. They downsized the cars during the 70s, but it took a while. And they still were larger than the Japanese cars. At that time it took around 5-7 years to design a new car. The Japanese already had the small ones. Even after downsizing for better gas mileage, the American companies didn't do much about quality until maybe the mid-80s.

While all this was going on, the consumer electronics industry had shifted from the US to Japan. The Japanese companies were buying up the US television and stereo companies until there was almost none left in the US. These products were another big import from Japan.

The trade deficit skyrocketed with huge amounts of US money going to Japan. There were other reasons, but this contributed to a major recession in the US in the late 70s, while the Japanese economy was booming.

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Consis
Consis


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Of Ruby
posted July 07, 2006 03:05 PM
Edited by Consis at 15:06, 07 Jul 2006.

Joe Lieberman

I was watching the Connecticut debates yesterday on CSPAN with Lieberman and that other guy. Hahaha I can't even remember his name. And I feel compelled to say that I think Joe is one of those people who is just a really great guy. I can't get over how much I love his personality and disposition. I just love him as a person. he is probably a great family man too.

But . . .

He's always run as an American Jew. That's really fine and dandy in my book but that only represents a small portion of the religious melting pot of America. Every time Israel overwhelmingly reacts to the suicide bombers, he is the first person to condone it. He also can't stop saying how good it was to go into Iraq. Don't get me wrong, I think his reasons for his opinions are absolutely sound . . . but . . . I don't think he represents all that many Americans with his views. He is just a great guy whom I wouldn't have any problem serving in any capacity if he were ever my captain, but he is not, nor will he ever be presidential material in my opinion.

Just think if he became president, that might actually be the straw that breaks the camel's back for all those middle eastern and arab nations who can't seem to get along. I could see them uniting under the premise that America is now a Jewish America. Everyone knows that there's nothing a muslim hates more than a Jewish occupier of their holy land.

Hmm . . .
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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted July 09, 2006 06:09 AM
Edited by pandora at 22:38, 10 Jan 2008.

I don't keep up with politics any more. I know the name Joe Lieberman, but know nothing about him except that his name has come up the last few elections.

I don't think a presidential candidate would be much affected by being Jewish. I don't know how much his stance regarding Iraq would affect things either. I think whoever his opponent ended up being, he/she would have a hard time criticizing Lieberman for his stance, unless they had distanced themselves from Iraq in the early days....and I'm still not sure how much affect it would have, the parties would be "backwards".

What you said about the response of the Muslim world might be exploited by his opponent, but I don't think it would sway too many votes. Domestic issues are almost always what decides elections except in extreme cases. But a lot of that depends on what happens between now and the election.

And anyone who wouldn't vote for him simply because he's Jewish wouldn't vote for him anyway. Those people wouldn't support anyone but a right wing neo-nazi.

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Consis
Consis


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Of Ruby
posted January 11, 2008 05:52 PM

Eh...Not What I Was Trying To Say

What I was trying to say is that there is a very real and very much alive and thriving segment of the American population who think of themselves as crusaders. In their minds the holy land is still the grand prize. Today's king crusader is Joe Lieberman. This stretches across religious lines too. We're talking about christians, muslims, and even some agnostics who simply would love the attention for having reclaimed a very public and talked about piece of geography(i.e. warmongers)
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Wolfman
Wolfman


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Supreme Hero
Insomniac
posted January 12, 2008 05:44 AM

Aww sad, I was reading this like it was new...then I got to, "I remember this thread!" so I checked the dates.  I like the first post, at the time I was probably out riding, teaching or moving hay.


Happy birthday to the United States and this past year marked it's 231st birthday.  I thought I'd kick it off in style, like any other birthday party, a great cake...



Yes, that's right, there are 231 candles on that cake.  At this point I couldn't wait to light it later that night.  When I had told my boss that I was going to bring a cake out to camp with 231 candles on it he laughed, he didn't think I was serious...

Later that night came the lighting:



I carried the cake out and set it on the picnic table and brought out the matches.  I started in one corner while a buddy started in the opposite corner.  Thanks to a calm 5 mph wind,it took all of about 2 minutes for the whole thing to catch and spread.  Where we had started lighting the candles were almost burned down to the cake and part wasn't even lit yet.  It was burning so hot we had to put it out so my boss decided to fan it with the lid to the pan.  I just blew it out like you would any other set of birthday candles.  Surprisingly it worked.



The next 20 minutes were spent picking wax off the top of the cake.  Those candles really did a number on that frosting.  Some of the wax slipped down the side of the cake and collected in the corners, it hardened really fast and looked pretty cool, red white and blue all swirled together.  After we picked about all of the wax off, we brought out the forks.  We finished it off right there, hard to save a cake that looked that bad.

Who needs fireworks...
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Binabik
Binabik


Responsible
Legendary Hero
posted January 12, 2008 05:51 AM

You're off by about six months on the birthday cake. Maybe you should have added an extra half candle.

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Wolfman
Wolfman


Responsible
Supreme Hero
Insomniac
posted January 12, 2008 06:15 AM

I did this in July actually.
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