Tag Archives: Smithsonian

Don’t Touch!

30 Oct

Over on GoComics.com we were discussing visiting a sewage treatment plant, of all things. Don’t ask; we tend to wander over there. Someone remarked that kids wouldn’t be as apt to wander off or touch everything they saw.

Many, many years ago, The Squire volunteered to chaperone Youngest Daughter’s school class on a trip to the Smithsonian. He gathered his troop and set off to one of the buildings. One of the girls in the class was what my grandmother would have called “willful”.  A handful, in other words. The child went off in all directions – ducking under ropes and trying to sit on the chairs. Even after The Squire had a “talk” with her, she dashed down one gallery, tapping every single portrait was she went – one, two, three, four . . .

The entire group – five or six students – ended up getting escorted out of the building and onto the mall. My husband made all of them sit on benches until it was time to meet for lunch. After they ate, he took them to another building, and darned if the kid didn’t pull the same stunts all over again. The Squire was seething, and the other students in the group were all angry at her, not him, for missing out. Again he made them sit on benches out on the mall; he sat beside her and tried to get some sense out of her. She could only say she was “just having some fun.” “How much fun is it to sit out here, and have all of your classmates angry with you?”  Blank look.

It turned out he had been given that group – that girl – because the staff had hoped she’d behave better for a man than a woman. What with one thing and another, it ended up with the girl having to publicly apologize to her classmates, and then her father brought her over here, to apologize to The Squire.


Oh! The Power I Wield!

2 Sep

Every day, we get an email from the Smithsonian, frequently special updates about articles in the magazine, but often things that are reserved only for the on-line subscribers.

A few weeks ago, there was a blurb about the length of Queen Elizabeth’s reign (sixty-three years and going strong), and the fact that she had only become queen due to a “fluke”; her uncle had abdicated, and her father had become a most reluctant king.  Some one replied that Elizabeth would have become queen eventually in any case. She had ascended 1952 upon the death of her father, but she still would have been crowned when Edward VIII (The Duke of Windsor) died childless in 1972.

I replied that had Edward not abdicated, there probably would not have been an England for Elizabeth to inherit. Edward and Wallis were both deeply sympathetic to the German cause (Remember that film clip of them teaching Elizabeth and Margaret the Nazi salute?) and Edward would have simply turned the country over to Hitler without a shot being fired. Even after his abdication, he was such a thorn in the Royal side that he and Wallis were shipped off to Bermuda to keep them from getting into too much mischief. In retrospect, I suggested that Wallis Warfield Simpson was probably the best thing that ever happened to England.

Well, I posted that once and it disappeared, so I posted it second time, and once more it vanished.

Disgusted, I wrote a third time, questioning the fact that it was apparent the Smithsonian, of all places, was indulging in censorship.

And, blip! The entire article is gone. No amount of searching will enable you to find it. Verrry mysterious. But true.