Posts Tagged ‘bears’

This Day in Revisionist History

*This Day in Revisionist History: A new feature where Jake talks about something that could be cool or whatever if it happened in history.

(Editor’s note: In case you missed our historic introduction of Jake earlier today, this is a classic from Jake’s archive. Tune in next week for the current edition!)

October 18:

“Wait, was that a bear? No dude, I’m not kidding, I think I just saw a f*cking grizzly bear!”

–General Lovell Rousseau on the morning of October 18, 1867, shortly after accepting the transfer of the Alaskan territory from Russia on behalf of the United States.

Nowadays almost everyone knows Alaska has bears, but as they say: Hindsight is 20/20. Now granted, this doesn’t make sense, because 20/20 is just the de facto standard; recent studies have suggested that optimal visual acuity occurs at about 20/8. But hey, when they came up with that expression, they didn’t have the benefit of…okay, you see where I’m going with this (and that’s called foresight, which strangely enough no one measures, not even metaphorically).

In any case, William Seward certainly didn’t know that the winter wonderland he had purchased in the spring of that year was overflowing with more bears than present day New York City has people, and so it was with great confidence that he signed the treaty with Russia’s minister to the United States, Baron Edouard de Stoeckl, who had risen to prominence in Russia despite his Turkish birth after developing what many industry experts now recognize as the most approximate precursor to the toaster strudel. Continue reading

Monday Medley

What we read while celebrating Ryan Longwell’s return to Lambeau….

  • We linked a few weeks ago to Malcolm Gladwell’s New Yorker analysis of football and head trauma. Gladwell’s article brought to the fore some issues that have been latent in football for some time (Wait…you mean this is a dangerous sport?), as seen by the attention it’s getting now from Congress and from former Chief Michael Oriard on Deadspin. (What we’d like to see more attention on: the horribly misfigured fingers of former football players. You can see a little with Ted Johnson in the NYT video above, but this is a growing trend among NFL analysts that some of us would rather not see; hence, lack of links.)
  • As part of our extensive World Series preview this week, Tim subtly criticized Philadelphia fans (we believe his words were, “Philadelphia fans suck”). Now, The New York Times‘ Mike Tanier–a native of Philly–examines the differences between the fan ideologies in the City of Brotherly Love and the Big Apple.
  • Here at NPI, we’re fans of both fun and theory; that’s why we’re big fans of “The Fun Theory.” Really, regardless of what it espouses, how can you not be a fan of “The Fun Theory”? It’s arguably our favorite named theory since the good old Theory of Everything.