I’m Not Sure What to Write

For the first time in a week, I slept through the night.  The last echoes of the flu seem to be a massive auto-immune attack that left me coughing and having asthma issues at night.  So, yes, you’ve been listening to the ramblings of a woman with almost no sleep.

This weekend I need to finish the collaboration with Kevin Anderson — well, my parts of it — so I don’t kill his schedule.  It’s going to be tough, and my mind is already on it and not on this blog.

I haven’t had any promo posts, and I’ve asked Charlie Martin to create a widget to send your books url to my associate account, so that I can run whatever people send through it, and not be dependent on our ambulatory mollusc’s very fraught time. Only for now I don’t have it.

I didn’t forget the vignette contest and if I owe you a mailing for various things, be patient for now.  I have to finish this novel and possibly the other collaboration, before I can turn my hand to stuff like that.  As usual, work with other people must take precedence, because I hate to be late on things and impact other people’s schedule.  (I also hate verbifying nouns, but I haven’t had enough caffeine to look for another word, just now.)

I’ve resumed work for PJM, with the proviso that a) it will be done around my fiction work, meaning they might at times have a bit of famine and glut, depending, and that I won’t be caught in an endless rewrite cycle.  My first post, on how we nuked the moon with Trump is up.

Yes, I know you have complaints about their interface, but honestly it’s much improved, and also I’ve never known any site that people don’t complain about.  Including my own.  (And heck, I complain about it too.)

Part of the reason I MUST do the collaborations ASAP and then probably sit down and write like a mad woman is that my ideas keep stacking up.  Those who’ve read From Out The Fire or Where Horse and Hero Fell probably know I have a “magical legion” thing in my head.  It’s lately gotten very loud, and I’d like to send it to Baen after the collabs.

Not that I’ve forgotten the dragon war and all the rest.  It should all be coming relatively soon. I only intend to take a few weeks off this year, and they’re not off from writing, just writing from a different location.  So–

Provided the health holds, and hopefully it will — this horrible flu was horrible for everyone and three and a half weeks to recover is NOT unusual or bad, actually.  And before I get the usual admonitions in the comments, yep, I had a shot in December.  There just was no covalence between it and this year’s strain, or at least this year’s strain in CO.

I’m going over page proofs for Dipped, Stripped and Dead, but I might not put it up this wekend, or at least not the paper version, since that takes at least 3 hours.  OTOH I could find myself fried around Monday (it is a three day weekend) and put it up.  Who knows.

Okay, that’s about it.  Now I go shower and have coffee and work.

125 thoughts on “I’m Not Sure What to Write

  1. We’ve been dealing with exhaustion issues here too. It’s amazing what a few nights of good sleep will do—pity I’ve been having trouble falling asleep despite going to bed just after the kids.

    Feel better.

  2. Enjoyed your nuke the moon piece. Glad your health is improving. Try not to wear yourself down with everything that needs to be written. Things are going the pace they need to I guess.

  3. Yes, I know you have complaints about their interface, but honestly it’s much improved, and also I’ve never known any site that people don’t complain about. Including my own.

    Most of my issues seem to center around my interface — it just seems more acceptable to complain about others’ interfaces. I find mostly it is just people like to complain, especially about change from the old familiar (those shoes were broken down* but they were broken down in a way to which I was accustomed, having level heels feels weird.)

    *Speaking of which, I read an article some years back about shoes being one of the areas which most separates male and female in America. Females tend to wear a pair of shoes once, twice, three times maybe and then discard them as worn out whereas males don’t think a pair of shoes is properly wearable until they’ve gotten a year or two of “breaking them in” invested. I’ve no idea whether that is true, but will admit to spending many minutes sitting in the atrium at my church, waiting on Beloved Spouse and watching people’s feet wondering what they were thinking when they chose those shoes for this week’s walk with G-D. (I confess to an occasional uncharitable thought that they chose that particular pair for Saturday night and just happened to be wearing them Sunday morning. There’s probably a Country song in there …)

    1. I have not seen that. Of course, at my size I can’t afford to treat shoes as anything other than precious rarities. (My feet are at the “HAHAHAHA! Good luck,” sizing when it comes to women’s shoes. While there are shoes in my size, they are often uncomfortable, overpriced, or obviously made for drag queens. I do not WANT orange stilettos, TYVM.)

      1. Guys often have the same problem.

        I wear EEE/extra wide, if I can get them. Even then I’ll wear the sides out before the bottoms. But (though this might be a local problem) the most common size is “narrow”, with “regular” and “extra narrow” being limited to a few odd styles and sizes, and “extra wide” practically nonexistent.

        Last time I found some shoes that actually fit, I dug deep into the piggy bank, went back, and bought eight more pair. I’m down to the next-to-the-last pair now, and dread going through the hassle again. Of course, they don’t make that SKU any more.

        As far as orange… I’m usually desperate enough to find shoes that actually fit, I’ve learned that Krylon does an acceptable job of painting and random color black, maybe with a touchup every now and then…

        1. I usually get my footwear locally, but since I’m more suited for Sasquatch Supply, it can be a challenge. Certain makers use a last that will let me wear a 14EE, and this is findable (I’m in the “if it fits, wear it” group), but others need a 15EE. Famous footwear has Nikes (fit really well) and New Balance (a bit tight). I used to wear SAS shoes, but my feet stretched after I retired. The locally owned boot/shoe place can order Red Wing boots in 15EE, and I got a steel toed pair for construction and heavy chores.

          The replacement structure-fire boots came from shoebuy.com. Those are available up to size 16, but 15 does it. I prefer these over rubber barn boots; if I have to tend a burn, I like to wear something that will both protect my feet and last a while. The boots they replaced lasted 10 years; same model, mild differences.

          1. I wear 9EE bordering on EEE, based on the standard shoe measuring thing that’s been around for over a century as a standard. I didn’t know shoes came in wide until I went to boot camp in 1973. Me feet were measured, and “8 wide” was yelled out. I was confused, and said I was wearing a size 10. He looked down again- “8 wide”. After the initial issue, got back to the barracks, and we all changed into out brand new identical outfits. And, by golly, the shoes fit perfectly! And ever since then, I won’t buy shoes unless they actually really do fit.

            Oh, another thing I discovered. As you get older, and if you walk a lot- your feet get bigger.

            When New Balance first showed up on the scene and were made in Massachusetts, I could mail order New Balance in my size, and they’d fit. Now, with most shoes being made in China, trying on shoes is a crap shoot. I took a measuring tape to a shoe store one time, and measured sets of shoes from a single manufacturer labeled 9D, 9EE, and 9EEEE. Every measurement across the toe box, the last, from stitch to stitch, front to back, no matter how I measured, was the same on all 3. So, two of the labels were obviously lies. I’ve repeated that with other makers at other times, and all I’ve got to say about it is that quality control for shoes made in Chinese factories, or anywhere else overseas, is non-existent. Lately I’ve found that Skechers seem to fit properly. I’ve just got to wonder how long that will last…

            If you don’t mind spending money on shoes, I can recommend San Antonio Shoes, made in the USA. At least most of the styles are, and the website let’s you choose if you’re not near a store. And they fit according to that shoe measuring thingie.

            1. Some Red Wings are USAian, but I’ve had good luck with their Chinese-made stuff. My Irish Setter insulated boots have lasted an unknown number of winters–iI gather the Chinese can produce good stuff, if you keep an eagle eye on them.

              In shoes, I prefer Nike (Air Monarchs or runners in town, or if weather is good and I’m on gravel or in the shop.). New Balance is a close second, and I’ve had good luck with Skechers until my feet got too big. Loved SAS when I lived in the city; still have an old pair to be worn out in the shop. Cheap offbrand shoes aren’t worth it for me. Even if they fit, they don’t last long.

              In boots, Red Wings are great, though Carolinas are sometimes good. I’ve had spotty luck with them. The current pair has lasted a few years, while previous ones died in two years.

              I used to settle for almost-fitting footwear, and have the bunions as a result. As icing on the cake, each big toe has arthritis, so a shoe with lots of room there helps. Still, I expect sore feet after market day in town.

          2. I have worn 4E since highschool; 6E for the last 10 years, and New Balance has never failed me. Before they came along, I went to cop shops because “flatfoot” became a synonym for a reason.

            1. Y’all are weird, freaky people. Of course, I say that with the utmost respect for your freakishly outsized feet. 🙂

              In most shoes, I am between a B and a C width. I sometimes wear down the outsides of my shoes because I can’t get them narrow enough, and my feet slide to the outside, causing the inside to tilt upwards.

              1. Older son wore 15 EEE in high school. We had to go to Denver to the one store that carried his size, before Amazon. Now he wears anywhere between 15EEE and 17 EEE, depending on the “cut” of the shoe.

                1. I am thoroughly convinced because my kid’s generation, same as your kid’s generation, have larger feet then we did, because they didn’t grow up in stiff leather shoes. And we had money enough to buy them new shoes as they outgrew the old, so their feet weren’t constrained. Out of 5 kids, only my daughter has smaller feet then mine, but they’re larger then her mother’s. Every parent I’ve talked to over the years with an older teenage boy has remarked about how big their kid’s feet are.

                  1. Over the last ten years I’ve moved from a 9 (yeah, I have short wide feet) to a 12. I fully expect to wear a 13 next time I buy shoes.

                    I still have a pair of combat boots I got in 1985. They’re marked 9D. And they’re the same size as the 12EE I’m wearing now.

                    I think we’re seeing some kind of size creep…

                1. Well, you know what they say about a man with freakishly big feet, doncha…?

                  Poor bastard has a lot of trouble finding shoes.

                  1. You know what they say, ladies: The size of a man’s feet directly correlates to the size of his – heart.

                    Line on the standup routine I’m working on, in reference to my 13EEEE hooves..

                    1. I remember the days when mine were merely 13D; life was good, footwear was easy to find. Then, 20-odd years of humping rucks caught up with me, and I’m now forced to look for things in 16D. Which isna’ eazy, laddie-o; ain’t nobody keeping those damn things in stock, anywhere. Everything is special order, and priced to match.

              2. Oh, my feet are a perfectly reasonable size—for a male. The fact that I occasionally want feminine shoes that aren’t a performance statement is the problem. (I do get Skechers sneakers for men because they’re comfy, though I have also gotten Skechers women’s sneakers in my correct size once in a blue moon.)

                1. Have you looked at Hotter? I really like them for dress and some work-dress shoes. Nice wide toe boxes and they have wide and extra wide in some things. Good quality, too.

                  1. Um… UK? (I like to actually be able to try shoes on, unless they are a manufacturer proven to be a good fit for me. Right now that’s Skechers and Capezio dance shoes.)

        2. I’ve found that the internet is a wonderful place for people who have feet at the edges of the bell curve. No local store will ever carry the sizes I need. Online though, I can find dozens and dozens of shoes in that size, all ready to order. I normally use “shoebuy.com” because of its search functionality. I usually buy New Balance 608 shoes in 4E extra wide.

      2. I’ve found the biggest problem with footwear is taking the proper time to get the right size. I hate shopping, so I tend to undercut the time needed. Put up with too tight shoes and damaged toenails for a few months before I wised up and got big enough shoes; and when the sales person tried to hurry me along, told him to take a hike.

        1. Well-fitted shoes are important. My mom’s feet have gone up something like a size and a half in the last twenty years, and she swears it’s because of tiny fashionable shoes she had to wear while growing up. (She also had bunions by 40.)

          Sneakers are wonderful things, and I have never had a tenth of the foot problems my mom had to put up with. The worst I ever did was bruise a toenail by wearing character shoes for an entire extended day of photography, and that’s because my big toe turns up. (I have found soft-top flats to wear instead.)

    2. My method for determining when to replace shoes: the holes in the bottom are still manageable.

      1. That’s roughly my philosophy as well. Or perhaps more accurately, my husband hasn’t yet noticed the holes and started harassing me about buying new shoes (our relationship is backwards in a lot of ways).

    3. I don’t see how women could possibly be doing that, from a financial perspective, unless they’re getting $10 shoes or literally barefoot most of the time (in the kitchen or elsewhere). Special occasion shoes, maybe.

      …Admittedly I have had pairs of shoes I only wore that many times because… well, a pair of low heels apparently passable in the store, worn for about a mile over concrete sidewalks by someone unused to heels, ended the day too abraded for the look to be worth the discomfort.

      1. I noticed that gravel drives do terrible things to pumps.

        I noticed that at the local shoe wear house there are some shoes that will get discounted to $10.00 and the local 5 Below carries some fabric shoes. I doubt they are well constructed, provide much in the way of support or that they would take much wear before blowing out.

    4. If you get decent shoes, you should be able to wear them more than four or five times. And I agree. There some ladies with those thin, steel-rod 4″ spikes that make my toes and calves and hips cry in agony just to watch them walk. No, just no, so no. But no one has ever complimented me on anything other than a pair of tan boots I got from LLBean this past year.

      1. When i was still riding the bus to work, one of the women, who looked to be about six months pregnant at the time, was still wearing 3-4″ heels. They weren’t quite spikes, but close enough. When i commented on it to one of the other women there, she said that she had worn her heels to the end of her seventh month of pregnancy. And this woman is already pretty tall, so that must have been something to see.

        1. Did a 3 month TDY in downtown DC, staying over in Virginia and riding the Metro in every day. Always packed and half the ladies were professionally dressed for office work, wearing ratty tennis shoes, with their office high heels in a bag to be donned when they got to work.

    5. And being moderately Odd, I go through two pairs of tennis shoes per year (walking. Lots of walking.) and am still on a five-year-old set of pumps for those times when I MUST dress up. Helps that I go to a casual-encouraged church, but still. 🙂

        1. I think the last time I wore heels (by my standards, which is maaaaybe 1″) was when I took the Kid to see the Lion King musical. I like to dress up approximately once a year, just to keep my husband on his toes…

        2. I go on stage once a year. I’ve found out that 1.5″ heels on my (dance) shoes are just about perfect, but if I have a hint of back issues like I get from time to time, 2″ heels will do me in.

    6. Men’s work shoes tend to run an order of magnitude greater than women’s shoes – unless they’re needing steel toed shoes, too. Steeling up my nerve to go look for a good pair. Cheap ones, in general, aren’t worth the money.

      It used to be hard to find size 13, but the last few times that hasn’t been an issue.

  4. You take care of yourself. I can wait. I suspect all your readers can wait, and will be happy to do so. Of course, I’ve been wrong before…but this is a good crowd.

  5. > PJM

    You get a couple of paragraphs, then you have to click for “more.” And another couple of paragraphs, and…

    I’ll add that to “truncate every comment to 100 characters” in my “list of things to do to drive away readers” list.

    1. Simply append ?singlepage=true to every URL and that will alleviate the tedium of the “load more” blues. Sure, you have the tedium of appending that hard to remember URL extension to everything there, but it is a manageable tedium.

        1. If it’s not there (and I used to see it, too), you can click on the print icon at the upper-leftish part of the page, then cancel. You’ve got the whole thing now in one piece.

    2. I only had to click once to extend Sarah’s article. And usually I see a “Click for the whole thing” link at PJM when it’s justified by the article length.

      1. I get three “mores”, but the last one apparently doesn’t do anything.

        I don’t see any likely-looking clicky thing to show it as a single page. And frankly, I’m too lazy to hand-key a URL extension, even for Sarah.

        1. I;m pretty sure the “see the whole thing” button went away with the advent of the “more” button. Sigh.

  6. A few years back I had the “Upper Respiratory Infection From Hell Itself” and found my system never fully recovered — several patterns, such as sleep, were revised forever (or, at least, to date) and processes to which I had long been accustomed, such as certain aspects of mental acuity, seem permanently diminished.

    I would find this depressing except my innate ancestral Slavic cheerfulness ensures I never get depressed.

    I fervently hope your flu recovery proceeds, that your dreams accrue untroubled, and that the writing flows.

    1. I had that, and it turned out that it had drained my system of Vitamin A and left me low on other important vitamins and minerals, like C, all the Bs including B12, and D. Try boosting this stuff.

  7. Well, that’s new. I see a comment in my email that is not showing up here. Possibly it’s not showing up in comments because, as the comment points out, his first comment went to moderation due to fat-fingering his email address.

    However, the fact that it showed up in my email surprised me. WP is crazy.

    1. And I *don’t* see it and it was my comment (unless it’s at the bottom?)

      C’est le guerre.

      I’ve got stuff to write myself. Ta-ta.

      1. Yeah, neither one of the others came through. I DO know why – if you use a different email than before, WordPress flags you as a new commenter, and all new commenters go to moderation, until Sarah lets them out of the holding pen.

  8. When I’m too tired to write, I try to plot and write when I’m rested. Of course, then I look at my work and think: “This made more sense when I was sleep-deprived.”

  9. Yay for sleep and shower! So many things can be solved with the application of enough sleep and lots of hot water!

    1. The 6-2-1 rule which I learned when I first started attending anime conventions: get at least six hours of sleep, eat at least two ‘real’ meals, and take one shower or bath everyday.

      (I would add: don’t wear the same clothes for the entire con, even if it is the coolest cos-play ever!)

  10. My washing machine just died (water all over). I won’t have it back until next week (tub cracked *sigh). Maybe someone or something is telling me to write.

      1. I had it happen with a front loader stainless steel tub. The repairman took one look, and said- “I’ve never seen that before.” I had never heard of it. And it was when I was selling them. It was 4 months old. I searched on the internet. It does happen, to all manufacturers, but it’s not common. Been working for 5 years now with the replacement tub.

    1. I recall a couple winters ago when the power went out for a week. Stayed home keeping the fireplace running. (Thank God I insisted on a real fireplace and not the fake ones too many McMansions have installed nowadays.) Used the propane camp stove on the porch for cooking and heating water. 4 gallons of hot water, mixed with cool, to take a semi-decent sponge bath in the shower stall and rinse the soap off every day.

  11. I had two viruses back-to-back that drained the brain and the rest of me for almost three weeks. Am finally back to something resembling Alma-normal.*

    *Alma-normal is well off the oddity curve of general category human – normal.

  12. Re; nuking the moon,

    My in-laws are very Liberal, and I had great fun with them through the whole Bush administration. When they blathered abiut how the Iraq and Afghanistan wars ‘wouldn’t solve anything’ my answer was to say “I agree. What Bush should have done is go in television on 9/12 and pick the names of three majority Islamic cities out of a hat, and then nuke them. And when the world had hysterics, answer by saying ‘there’s more where that came from’. Nobody would attack us for at least half a century.”

    1. When they blathered abiut how the Iraq and Afghanistan wars ‘wouldn’t solve anything’

      I’m often curious as to when “anything” has ever been solved*, but I’ve sense enough to not ask the kinds of people who complain about war not solving anything.

      *For years I had a Baen’s Bar sig line that read:
      Your present problem is a consequence of the your solution to the prior problem; your next problem will be a result of your solution to your current problem.

      1. I would venture to suggest the the problem the huguenots posed to France was solved,with considerable finality.

        In general, any ‘problem’ that doesn’t resurface for more than half a century should (in my opinion) count as ‘solved’ for all practical purposes.

        My answer to “Violence never solves anything” has always been “Perhaps you mean; violence doesn’t solve things in a way we like.”

          1. Anyone who clings to the historically untrue and thoroughly immoral doctrine that violence never settles anything I would advise to conjure up the ghosts of Napoleon Bonaparte and the Duke of Wellington and let them debate it. The ghost of Hitler could referee and the jury might well be the Dodo, the Great Auk, and the Passenger Pigeon. Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor, and the contrary opinion is wishful thinking at its worst. Breeds that forget this basic truth have always paid for it with their lives and their freedoms.”

            – Lt Col Jean Dubois, MI (ret)

  13. I’m finally getting used to my 4 a.m. schedule, more or less, so I’m hopeful of starting to be more productive.

    I’m glad they’ve been trying to give us more regular schedules since the rebuild. We just changed G.M.s, so I hope that she’s going to keep that up as well.

    Anyway, I know what getting a full night 🌙 of sleep can do for you. Keep taking care of yourself. 😃

  14. Ahem *glances around, lowers volume of voice* we’ve never had a limerick contest. PG-13, PG, or G rated only. That might be something to try.

    1. A lady suggested some Lim’ricks
      She wanted to show off some new tricks.
      Her try was first rank;
      The thing really stank.
      It turned out her thought was fantastic..

    2. No, but I wrote some pretty nasty limericks and rhymes in the comments here in response to the puppy-kicking behavior at last year’s WorldCon that was written about here. (There’s something wrong with the above sentence, but my brain refuses to cooperate on improving ti right now.)

    3. BURN THE WITCH! 😀
      At one company I worked at the daily build release notifications were in haiku. When builds became my responsibility I claimed inability to haiku and reverted to Shakespearian sonnets. We were quite literate computer geeks…

      1. By “That might be something to try.” is it possible she meant “try by jury” or “try by fire” rather than “attempt”?

    4. Not much action on this today. Maybe some help getting started?

      There was a young feller from Limerick,
      Who thought he’d invented a new trick

      Note, the gender can be changed to suit. Anybody considering making that gender change the subject of the second couplet should notice the obvious final rhyme.

    5. Well, I would like to inflict what you caused me to watch just now on you, but it wouldn’t meet the stated criteria. Therefore I shall use the Honor System payback system and suggest you look up a video called The Limerick Song on Youtube, by someone going by the name savageminstrel.

  15. Am trying to recover from same flu stuff here in Florida. Yes, had a flu shot. Haven’t been this sick for this long in literally years. Am like a newborn, all I do is eat (not much no appetite), sleep 18 hours a day and complain (sort of ). Today is first day have felt like might finally get well (beginning of 4th week of this crap). Just sharing on the theory that misery loves company!

  16. Hmm. Only problem I have with PJM interface is that they need to make the bylines bigger… I must have been over there a half dozen times, and never read the piece – until you told me it was by you.

    An opinion from one who lived here through the Nixon nightmare. If anyone would have been “Nixon, Redux” – it would have been Hillary. Some truly serious semi-paranoia issues there. (“Semi” because, like Nixon, some of her enemies are quite real. For very good reasons, mostly.)

    1. Trump’s election, I think, makes the state of the country itself similar to when Nixon took office. The Left thought it was on the verge of victory, but overextended itself and scared off the voters who then elected a moderate Republican candidate. This happened both in 2016, and in 1968.

      Personality-wise, though, both men are quite different (from what I can tell).

      1. Nixon had a personality? Trump’s, to me, is that of an insufferable Ass. However, I dare say Trump’s presidency has been making me very happy. Not that I trust him, or that all his decisions are great, but watching the leftoids has been a bright light in an otherwise crappy year.
        My only real memory of Tricky Dick was his appearing on TV, and me being upset because he was going to be on all the channels! (all 2 networks, and PBS. We couldn’t get the ABC back then) I was 3 or 4 maybe.

        1. It *was* a bright spot for me until I started wondering just how far off we are from a shooting war. Now I’m antsy and grieving friends who’ve dropped me because I don’t follow their particular gospel.

        2. If I wanted a nice person for President, I’d have voted for Ellen DeGeneres, or Oprah Winfrey. But I really wanted a President who wasn’t afraid to get dirty, and to shovel out the Augean Stables of Washington. Trump is perfectly suited for such a task.

  17. “There just was no covalence between it and this year’s strain, or at least this year’s strain in CO.”

    Or anywhere else, trust me. 10% effective is the figure I keep hearing.

    1. Good news: The nation’s main modern flu vaccine production facilities are well equipped with labs to help modify the vaccine when new strains are encountered, and have the production capacity to make a heck of a lot.

      Bad news: The lead time is too long to do anything about this flu season.


      1. Yeah, from what I knew of it, workup is the bugaboo, so if’n they guess wrong, or something new comes along, you gonna get sick, shot or no, and often it seems to me that those with the shot tend to be sicker when they get something that the shot does not cover.

  18. cspschofield wrote “I would venture to suggest the the problem the huguenots posed to France was solved, with considerable finality.”

    I find the Carthage example more convincing. The Huguenot solution seems to’ve been somewhat complicated — no matter which phase you are thinking of, there was trouble afterwards. Admittedly, probably not as much as the considerable trouble they caused before, but not negligible trouble either.

    Which phase of the solution of the Huguenot problem with finality are you thinking of? The wars up to the Edict of Nantes? Or the aftermath of the later revocation of the Edict of Nantes?

    E.g., Macaulay’s version of the runup to the revocation is online:

    “The long and heroic struggle which the Huguenots had maintained against the French government had been brought to a final close by the ability and vigour of Richelieu. That great statesman vanquished them; but he confirmed to them the liberty of conscience which had been bestowed on them by the edict of Nantes. They were suffered, under some restraints of no galling kind, to worship God according to their own ritual, and to write in defence of their own doctrine. They were admissible to political and military employment; nor did their heresy, during a considerable time, practically impede their rise in the world. Some of them commanded the armies of the state; and others presided over important departments of the civil administration. At length a change took place.”

    As in, lo, the Edict of Nantes cannot bind me! For I am King! *King*!


    The other professors of the reformed faith were forbidden to leave the kingdom; and, in order to prevent them from making their escape, the outports and frontiers were strictly guarded. It was thought that the flocks, thus separated from the evil shepherds, would soon return to the true fold. But in spite of all the vigilance of the military police there was a vast emigration. It was calculated that, in a few months, fifty thousand families quitted France for ever. Nor were the refugees such as a country can well spare. They were generally persons of intelligent minds, of industrious habits, and of austere morals. In the list are to be found names eminent in war, in science, in literature, and in art. Some of the exiles offered their swords to William of Orange, and distinguished themselves by the fury with which they fought against their persecutor. Others avenged themselves with weapons still more formidable, and, by means of the presses of Holland, England, and Germany, inflamed, during thirty years, the public mind of Europe against the French government. A more peaceful class erected silk manufactories in the eastern suburb of London. One detachment of emigrants taught the Saxons to make the stuffs and hats of which France had hitherto enjoyed a monopoly. Another planted the first vines in the neighbourhood of the Cape of Good Hope.

    Almost Kipleinesque, though well before (1850ish AD) either Kipling or the Radiation Lab or Los Alamos or Heinlein — once you have gotten rid of the pesky merchant minority, you will never get rid of the bad luck of your rivals acquiring things like the proximity fuses and atomic bombs to drop on you…

    And a bit later, more unwelcome-to-France consequences influenced by the event: the fall of the French client James II in England in favor of France’s bitter enemy William of Orange, and then an expensive war against France itself by a coalition whose coalition politics were complicated but at least arguably strengthened by the French treatment of the Huguenots and their revocation of the Edict to do it. And even later, in the longer, run it was exceedingly expensive for France to end up a laggard in the runup to the Industrial Revolution, and to have a dysfunctional Continental “Enlightenment” instead of a more Scottish-style Enlightenment. If the Huguenot thing contributed even 5% to either of those losses, that small share of an exceedingly large cost is not a negligible cost either.

    1. I seem to have carelessly left an “A” HTML tag unclosed in that post and thereby turned most of my reply into One Enormous Hyperlink To Rule Them All mixed with other incompatible markup. It’s still basically readable in my browser (ancient Firefox) but for all I know some other browsers may do something weirder with it, sorry.

    2. *adds another book to the never diminishing pile*
      Interesting. According to family lore, our ancestors were French Huguenots that emigrated to the 13 colonies at the time. Too bad we don’t have any surviving letters and such.

      *wanders off to the family “history” to track down some more names*

      1. Check—in that I once dated a Huguenot daughter by way of Pennsylvania before relocation for pere’s work, I think. She said she learned to program at age four. She thought their last name was an alias.

      2. My father tells of a wooden shoe carefully preserved by his mother, who said it was from the family when they came from Holland. They lost it when their house burned.

        This muddied our genealogy, for no one thought to ask if she meant her husband’s surname or her’s. Then it turned out that her surname was of the French Huguenots who wound up in South Carolina, and some had stayed in the Netherlands before coming to the Americas.

        That’s more likely than a more wild possibility: a family of our surname that went to the Netherlands, but there’s no hard connection between us and them.

        1. Doesn’t help that the family history I have access to was written by a great uncle and aunt that were trying to connect the family name (mom’s side) to famous people. One point there was a huge debate whether we were related to a famous poet due to the spelling of one of the family names in the history. There were a few other laughable instances of false information in there that kind of threw most of their research into question. 🙂

    3. Rather amazing the way history has of repeating itself; the French did unto the Huguenots what the Germans did unto the Jews, and wound up really screwing themselves over, in the long run.

      Quite like the Arabs; had they embraced their fellow Semites, and taken them in after the Europeans drove them out…? We would likely be talking about a world where there was a major superpower in the Middle East, born of a fusion between Jewish intellect and Arab oil wealth. Instead, the fools threw their Jews out, concentrated them in Israel, and created a lasting enmity that will likely make what happened to the Germans look tame by comparison.

      Religious persecution of internal minorities often has a way of turning in your hand…

    4. And England did the you can’t leave without letters stating you are a loyal subject (so you can’t go raise an army overseas) after the Scots rebellion of 1745 (as oppose to you cannot leave at all) I had a landlady in Raleigh who had donated her family’s letter to the state historical collection.

  19. Messing with the Jews…has a history of going bad for the messers. Unfortunately for the Jews, not soon enough.

    1. That’s what gets me about the Arab attack on the infant Israel in ’48. You’re attacking a young nation populated with people tough enough to survive the Holocaust. Why don’t you strip naked and go molest. Lion? It would hurt less!

    2. For a while Jews hired out as mercenaries 500-300 BC/BCE or so. And then there was the little affair of Judah the Hammer and his relatives and supporters terminating at least one Seleucid army . . .

  20. I usually get it last and worst. The abomina-flu that struck my cousins, my co-workers, my folks, and various other people I interact with has finally come to roost on me. Whereas it was a week of feel-bad, funk, and sniffly-ugh, with me it’s like brain is on vacation and what’s left is manning the desk (with great difficulty, and few successes).

    Glad health is returning, and sleep is good. I just wrote, “sleep is god,” and when you don’t have any, that’s a close approximate. Take care of you, and write like the wind. Er, no. Actually, you should probably write like your words are chasing the b*stard who snatched the last macadamia nut cookie, seeing all (or at least some) of what you’ve got planned.

    Y’all take care, folks, and keep healthy! Even if it’s in a jar in the pantry. *grin*

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