August 11

Amber pages

Frederick Douglass, runaway slave, first spoke in public, today in 1841.

Which is an extraordinarily empty and meaningless statement, not worth recording in almanac or blog, let alone encyclopedia, though perhaps useful as a piece of knowledge on "Who Wants To Be A Proof-Reader for Wikipedia" or the pub-version of "Third Rate Polytechnic Challenge". 

But then you add "and this is what he said, and to whom, and why it mattered", and the entire entry is transformed (or potentially transformed, provided that what he said was worth the saying, let alone the remembering). I will return to this page, and attempt to do that, as soon as I have completed setting up the other amber pages.

The same for "Asaph Hall, US astronomer, discovered the two moons of Mars, today in 1877". In the meanwhile I can tell you, for my bonus points, having asked a friend for the former and used a lifeline for the latter, that one is named Phobos and the other Deimos, which I guess is logical - they were Mars' two sons, and given that he was the god of war, not surprising that his sons should be named Fear and Dread (two extra marks for that as well!).

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