I recently decided that I needed to round out my education a bit… well, strike that. I decided a couple decades ago that I needed to round out my education a bit. Pursuant to this goal, I did a quick search to find a reading list to provide a grounding in the classics and humanities. One particularly helpful website not only provided a list but also suggested that the very first thing one should read before reading anything is the somewhat circularly titled, “How to Read a Book.” So of course I immediately purchased a copy…. For my Kindle. It promises to have a lot to say on the seemingly simple topic.
Something in my day jogged a recollection of something I’d read in a book a few weeks ago. The author was describing the origin of the Mafia. My source on this is not entirely credible on this topic or any other, but he described the mob as starting out as a simple group of inventive individuals who did little else but “run numbers.” These simple lotteries were easy and profitable and nobody got hurt. It wasn’t until the state decided to outlaw the numbers racket and replace it with a state-run lottery system that the mob turned to other more violent practices to support themselves. This could be utter garbage, but the story appeals to the cynical part of my brain that thinks most of the problems of society are in fact caused by the greed and ignorance of those in charge.
For some long while I’d had the sense that the process of adoption was tough. That position was fortified in my mind upon learning that it requires a significant course of self-improvement equivalent to two semesters at college. It is a vastly cliché statement to make, but it boggles my mind that the process of bringing an otherwise unwanted child into your home to care for it is so many orders of magnitude more difficult than the almost careless manner in which you can have a new child of your own.
I’m a man of many potential hobbies and I learned today that a simple model rocket can be had for a mere pittance at $20. For $100 you can purchase a nose-cone with a video camera in it. I’m hopeful (as is my wallet) that if I put this nugget of information down in this blog and then never refer to it again that I can shove this fact far enough from the forefront of my mind that I won’t go drop a few hundred dollars on rocketry equipment on a whim. So much to do, so little time.