Month: April 2020

Covers Lightly Worn From Handling (III)

“No, it’s true; I shouldn’t buy it.  But I’m lousy at business, which is why I’m a bookseller.  If I wanted to get rich, I’d sell drugs or something.”

She laughed, startled; he went on.  “I’m in it because of the stories — the ones about the books as much as inside the covers.  This Thackeray set, for instance:  One day, twenty years from now, a collector will wander in and see it.  I’ll tell him the story of Tauchnitz the publisher, and he’ll be fascinated — the whole tale of the great linen factories of Bohemia, this curious series of English books printed in Germany, the international (more…)

Body humors and not washing hands. (Part 1-1 of Weird Historical Medical Beliefs and Todays Medical Quackery)

Multi-part series. Fascinating read.

Sgt Scholar

Would you smear a pile of fresh cow shit on your kid to ease swelling? Or how about letting someone drill a hole in your skull to remove evil spirits? Would you ground up mummies and snort the powder like lines of blow?

Let’s take a disturbing stroll down history lane to explore some of humanity’s many bizarre medical beliefs and practices. And then after you feel great for not living in the WTF-Era of nonscientific medicine, let’s take a look at the popular market of snake-oil medicine and medical quackery still alive and well.

Part 1: Weird Medical beliefs in history

Part 2: Psuedoscientific medical practices today

Part 3: Today’s Medical Pseudoscientific Talking heads

(Note links to public-friendly media are provided, but academic sources are cited for more detailed information).


Part 1-1: Body humors and not washing hands

Body humors

Before the germ…

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Three Volumes, Slightly Foxed (II)

“…It’s lovely, beautifully if plainly bound, has some historical interest, and is worth about eighty bucks.  Which means I pay forty.”

She blinked.  “But my uncle told me it was a great treasure — that he was…”  She was shocked; clearly she’d expected a lot more.

“He was wrong, I’m afraid,” the bookseller said as kindly as he could manage.  He had himself fallen in love with the little set, even though he knew it would never sell.  “The trouble with genuinely rare books is… well, they’re rare.  You’ll probably never see more than a couple in your entire life; I’m in the business, and I’ll only (more…)

Three Volume Edition Of “Pendennis” (I)

“…and a three-volume edition of Pendennis, by Thackeray; second printing.  Rebound recently — and very well — but printed first in Liepzig, of all places, back in 1849.”  The young man turned from his computer screen to confront his visitor, who was by now visibly bored.  He sighed, but slogged on.

“Like most of these, it’s old, but not particularly valuable.  The true first edition (more…)

The Story Of Little Donnie Ray Gun

Jim Acosta just Tweeted something:  “WH just played what appeared to be a campaign video defending Trump.  In the briefing room.  Just like a rally”

There’s truth in what Mr. Acosta says; there usually is.  The man’s quite reliable.  It’s also worth noting, however, that — as is his usual wont — Mr. Acosta is also missing a truth that I should think would be entirely obvious. (more…)


We’re all waiting.

Some of us are waiting idly at home, distracting ourselves from the gradually collapsing system outside our doors.  Some are teleworking, putting in the same productivity-free hours we normally would but in pajama bottoms.  Some are going out like normal, vaguely afraid they’ll catch a fatal illness but telling themselves whatever they have to in order to get through their day. (more…)

F&L: Our Endorsement

The editorial staff of The Not Fake News, together with our Brain Trust, has long debated registering our formal endorsement for the Presidency of the United States.  With the departure of Bernie Sanders from the race, we have finally determined that there’s absolutely nobody running we think is qualified, competent, mentally stable, and has unimpeachable moral standards.

This is nothing new in American politics.  Very few of our presidents (more…)