Archive for July, 2010

On this day…


It is amazing how little there is in the world to comment on. An unearthly pile of documents about Afghanistan was dumped on the internet to a resounding yawn. It is amazing that anyone would be so foolish as to think that anyone actually cares about Afghanistan any more.

That was not the case on this day in 1914. As only a couple are still alive who actually remember it, let me explain. A few days before there was an insignificant little matter in Serbia involving the surprise death of a piece of useless piece of Eurotrash royalty, some Hapsburg getting shot. Well, for some bizarre reason people got really annoyed about that and started declaring war on each other. People were weird back then. And thus on this day the German language got a new word for “speedbump”–Belgium.

And the fun was on! Faster than you could say “who cares?” Austria Hungary declared war on Serbia. Russia declared war on Austria Hungary. Germany declared war on Russia. France Declared war on Germany. Italy declared war on Austria Hungary. Bulgaria declared war on everyone but it was Bulgaria and no one noticed except the Turks. England tried to stay out for a few days but got all upset about the invasion of Belgium (why?) and declared war on Germany to make the world safe for waffles!

The United States couldn’t make up its mind what to do. It wanted to join the fun but could not decide who to declare war on. Oh, there was the silliness about the ship carrying tons of weapons that got torpedoed with some American tourists on board but folks quickly realized that anyone going to Europe with that war going on was mentally deficient and deserved to drown. Finally things just got too much, having to sit outside the candy store window and look on so a coin was tossed in Washington and the US declared war on Germany, deciding to hold off on declaring war on Britain for later.

And thus it went. And by the time it was over there were no more monarchies that mattered, Russia had found a new way to enslave itself, some of the worst poetry in all human history had been written mostly about dead people and poppies, and the stage was set for the next big party. Oh, and Flanders was blown off the map. (Have you ever tried to find Flanders on a map?)