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If you had to choose between having a house and living in a beautiful mountain chain area or living by the beach, which would you choose? It would be one darn choice for me, as I love both.

OK, if I could choose between living in the mountains and going to the beach whenever I felt like it, on weekends or vacations, that would be sweet.

All of this musing is simply theoretical, you see, since when you own several mansions around the world, this is not an issue. 😉

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What is a false vacation, you ask? It’s a period of days where you do not have to work, but you have a ton of other life-or-death priorities and tasks to take care of. However, you get lulled away by the illusion that you do not have to get up early in the morning and you think you can sit here and blog and write a bunch of stuff and think and look at the sky and go for an aimless walk and watch hours of TV – while all the deadlines for the hugely other important, but deadly boring stuff you need to get done go right by. Again.

So I was watching the national coverage of this big international Track and Field event where the TV people managed once again to irritate me profoundly with a certain practice. You’ve probably seen this a million times. They place one of their reporters/commentators next to the track to catch every single one of their athletes (same nationality as the TV crew), before the athletes are able to escape to the locker rooms. All for that immediate flash interview right after the athlete has participated in an event. The reporter will always ask one of two questions, depending if the athlete has won or lost. If the latter has lost, the bright lightbulb will stick the microphone to the athletes’ face and say with a slight but unmistakable reproachful tone, «So, very disappointed with having lost ? » I mean, seriously. Then they cut back to the studio where all the idiots up there go, “Yes, we are ALL very disappointed that so and so lost our gold medal for us.” And if the athlete wins, the stadium reporter will be all peppy and say, « So, are you very excited with having won? » D’uh. First of all, in the no-gold case, just leave them alone, they don’t want to talk to a stupid reporter right after having lost. Second of all, whether they win or lose, the continued repetition of solely these two questions gets to be so irritating, since we already know what the reporter will ask and we also know that such questions can only elicit stupid 30 second answers in turn. It’s like a show of moronic marionettes, all dancing to the same manipulative hand, which pulls the same string every time. It would be nice if for once, an athlete replied, « So, do you realize that this terribly futile interview circus does not add anything of value for the people watching and 15 million people have just zapped their remote control to surf other channels the minute you opened your mouth. Congratulations to you too.»

Related posts – The fabrication of a false hero.

I was just watching a documentary on ebay on TV. I have always found people who collect things to be demonstrating some repulsive cultural-emotional problem. I think there is very much a limit to how many things it is healthy to own, after that, even if they are things that one can put to use, like clothes, it just becomes a manifestation of a displaced desire for more satisfying emotional experiences, that the person doesn’t succeed in having.

What has always been very stark to me is the degree of emotional attachment that people develop with whatever objects they collect. It is not a relationship to people or other living creatures, collectors relate to objects, evidently lifeless, and which have no useful purpose for the collector, like a bunch of useless toys. And what I find perhaps the most disturbing is exactly this non-interactive dimension of collecting. People don’t collect things to use them in daily life, they collect them to collect them and do nothing except gaze at them. It is also true that there is often a social dimension that is developped vis-à-vis other similar collectors, which can range from a friendly recognition of the same collecting affliction 😉 to “my collection is bigger than your collection – ooh.” Like someone cares?

Obviously there is a selfishness to collecting but I think what bothers me the most is how futile the whole deal is, just amassing a bunch of useless objects, and onto which people deposit a ton of useless emotional feelings. I have always found this psycho-emotional relation to the things themselves to be very repulsive. What have you done? Nothing. What have you constructed? Nothing. What have you invented? Nothing. Who have you helped? No one. But you have a bunch of things piled up in a room. It’s a normalized form of craziness, I think.

I relate to things so differently than that. So it is actually impossible for me to comprehend why so many other humans on the planet have this « collecting » problem and the fact that they actually get a considerable amount of emotional pleasure from this horribly dissatisfying, futile, emotionally vapid, dehumanized collecting activity. It is like trying to understand Martians – we cannot belong to same species.

This brings me to another point that I think is a problem nowadays. With all the political battles that were fought against racism, the idea and the truth that humans can experience life in radically different ways has largely been erased, all following the obsessive PC dogma that « we are all the same, » even if we come in different colors on the outside. In truth, we, humans, can be so profoundly, immensely different, very much like different species. A lot of people are profoundly disturbed by the fact that humans can be extremely different, think differently, feel differently, and they would like to concepturally erase these extreme differences which are unquestionably a fact. They want to impose a concept stating that the human race is pretty much all one glob of clones with minor variations. This is not the case at all. Usually these people have very mediocre minds and are not capable of thinking about human experience with complexity, but they can be the majority, even the totality in many different settings.

Interesting case on freedom of speech/religion vs pro-homosexuality/hate speech concepts. Excerpts:

(AgapePress)

A federal appeals court in New York will once again be hearing arguments in a case involving a church in Staten Island that was banned from displaying a billboard because it contained a Bible verse condemning homosexuality.

In 2000, a church called Keyword Ministries contracted to post a billboard on Staten Island containing one scripture verse in four translations — “Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind. It is abomination” (Leviticus 18:22, KJV). The billboard was signed: “I AM your Creator.”

After a great deal of public outcry, the president of the borough publicly said the billboard served no useful purpose and was essentially “hate speech.” He then wrote a letter to the billboard company, arguing the sign was a message of intolerance and “not welcome” in the borough. Later the sign company took it down.

In September 2000, the Center for Law & Policy (CLP) — the legal arm of the American Family Association — filed a lawsuit on behalf of the church, claiming a government entity exercised its influence to suppress free speech. The suit has been dismissed twice by the federal district court for the Eastern District of New York. It is being heard again today (August 8) before the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Mike DePrimo, senior litigation counsel for the CLP, is appearing before the Second Circuit to present the case. He says the case is a clear-cut example of religious censorship. “The city cited their anti-discrimination law as the basis for their action,” DePrimo explains. “They essentially said that stating that homosexuality is a sin violated laws against intolerance.”

In a press release the legal group says it intends to question whether it is constitutionally permissible to characterize the Bible as “bigoted” and to condemn it as conveying “a message of intolerance that is not welcome” in New York City. CLP chief counsel Steve Crampton, also in New York to argue the case, believes the case is an example of the continuing attack on religious freedoms in the U.S.

See this past post on some questions regarding hate speech: Criminalizing Thought – Hate Speech/Crime Legislation. Excerpt:

In our deeply putrid world, “hate” speech is defined as:

Hate speech is a controversial term for speech intended to hurt and intimidate someone because of their race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, [gender,] sexual orientation, or disability.

Notice that no speech that intends to hurt and intimidate someone (even in the case of a child) regarding the sexual sphere is included above.

See more on legal definitions of hate speech/crime here.

To show just how a liberal society is a diseased society, let’s put some questions forth. If I wanted to publish a web site saying the same Bible verses, would liberals deem that “hate speech?” Yes. If I add a first page warning that the sites might be offensive to some people, and have the viewer agree that they had been warned, would pro-homos still cry “hate speech?” Yes. If I then put up 1000 sites of porn where women were being depicted as being raped for the enjoyment of the viewers, would pro-homos cry “hate speech?” No. If I put up a porn site where a homo rapes another homo, would pro-homos cry “hate speech?” No. If I put up a porn site where a homo rapes another homo, denigrates and demeans the homo-victim using a hundred different swear words, including words such as “bitch” or “faggot,” would pro-homos cry “hate speech?” No. If I put up a site where several homos sexually torture other homos, would this be “hate speech?” No. This would all be deemed sexual freedom and liberation, freedom of speech, personal liberty, and creative freedom. If I put up a site where homos rape others, denigrate them, torture them, and then at the end, I add a Leviticus Bible verse, what would happen? Pro-homos would say that it’s fine to depict the rape, denigration, and sexual torture of homos ( and others) in porn, because that is “freedom,” but to state that homosexuality is a sin is “hate speech.” Is this Orwellian or what?

This in itself is perhaps the most glaring aspect of how diseased a liberal society is in its attitudes and values regarding sex. It is patently obvious that if saying that “homosexuality is a sin” constitutes a threat, an intimidation, so does depicting the insult or the rape or aggressions of a sexual nature involving homosexuals also constitute a threat. If one believes the former encourages harmful actions, so must the latter. I’m not going to post a long list of different types of examples of dehumanization and sadism that we find in the majority of porn production (including an analysis of the attitudes, the values, the messages, the words, the profanity, the behaviors and actions depicted in porn). It’s a click away in any big porn site. If saying “homosexuality is a sin” is intimidating, so is every depiction of homosexual denigration or violence. There is no way you can argue that there is some magical component to saying “homosexuality is a sin” that is going to make everyone who hears it go out and commit some violence against homosexuals. Because if so, then saying “raping a homo is a great thrill” will also do the trick – and therefore, it should also be censored as hate speech. Additionally, if the portrayal of violence against homos is intimidating, it certainly also is when the victims are heterosexuals. And here lies the answer of why today we have this double standard in society regarding what is and isn’t “hate speech.” This goes back to the question that I highlighted in a previous post as being very important in solving the puzzle of this sociological analysis: why did the feminists that were anti-porn lose the porn war from the legal and cultural perspective? (first asked by a Cotillion blogger)

At the moment, the ideological power regarding sexual issues rests with liberals, who are a very privileged social group that is extremely comfortable with promoting sexual harassment and violence in the world, through their liberal culture, although they don’t admit it and always frame it as a defense of freedom. In this respect, liberals can be deemed as a macro-elite (a mass elite, a dominant elite that encompasses a very large number of people).

In the US and in other liberal societies like it, the ideology (the attitudes and values) concerning sex is an ideology that exists to sustain the extreme selfishness of the sexual liberal. This ideology exists to defend the right to get just about any sexual kick with no concern to human dignity and character; it promotes lies about how extensive the dysfunctions and different forms of sexually related violence are; it legitimizes the mass production and perpetuation of a culture of sexual violence and various forms of oppression. This is the reality of this so called sexual freedom or liberalism. To note: a liberal here does not, in any way, mean a man – a good deal of liberals are women, only too happy to promote a culture that results in violence and harassment of other vulnerable women and anyone else that gets the brunt end of the system.

The other point to stress is the hypocrisy between so-called public and private spheres and discourses that depict denigration and violence. (This is continuously exemplified by some of the pro-porn morons at Ace’s.) The argument that is made is: if you denigrate a woman in a porn medium, that is, a medium where there is a barrier between the published format and the general public, it is OK – according to liberal ideology. Now if you shove the denigration in people’s faces in a public medium without their consent, then it is a problem. Now here lies one of the greatest ideological lies of our modern era. Take this example. If saying “homosexuality is a sin” on a public medium that will be seen by 50,000 people is an act of intimidation, so then are the depictions of aggressions against homos on private (or semi-private ) media that are seen by 50,000 or even 500,000 people. If the former affects behavior, so does the latter. The change in behavior or attitudes is not determined by the public/private aspect of the medium, but by the message. If we ban cigarette smoking ads that encourage smoking because cigarette propaganda affects behavior when disseminated on a mass scale – then we should ban depictions of aggressions that have an objective of entertainment that are disseminated on a mass scale. Because if cigarette propaganda changes behavior, so must dysfunctional sexuality propaganda (i.e., another term for porn). The most stupid argument that certain people make against this fact is that they can watch all the porn in the world and that this will not make them commit a crime. This argument is false because propaganda does not affect everyone in the same way or degree, but it does affect a certain percentage of people in a large population. The ban on cigarette smoking is based on this truth. But here is another aspect of the extreme callousness of liberals. As long as the sexual violence and harassment is shoved on others, they defend a sexually degrading and violent culture as freedom, and lie about its connections to harmful and aggressive attitudes and behaviors. Therefore we can correctly deem and label liberals (meaning pro-porn/pro-homosexuality people) as sexuality Goebbels’.

Clayton writes about migraines. I don’t think I’ve ever had a single migraine in my life. And very fortunately I rarely have headaches, and when I do, they are mostly caused by very easily determined causes, such as a cold or just anxiety and stress, and usually they are not very strong.

However all my luck with not having headaches goes away regarding a million other ills. With colds, it seems I am getting feebler in the recent years. For the first time in my adult life I had a really serious throat ache a couple of years ago, and now I am extremely prone to ear aches, anytime there is a slight cold wind blown in my ears. This is not like being caught in an artic storm, this is like being outside in the winter when there is some wind, and everybody else is not wearing hats and no one else gets an ear ache except me. No escape – it happens immediately or right the next morning – anytime I don’t protect my years. And my colds now take forever to finally disappear. I am forced to watch as a different phase goes by each 1-2 weeks, a full cold lasting anywhere from a month to two! That’s how long it takes me to get rid of everything. It’s murder.

Another horrible degenerative development in the recent years is getting vertigo if I stand up too quickly. This is really annoying, because it freaks me out psychologically. And more irritatingly, doctors think it’s nothing. “So what if you feel a little dizzy when you lift up your head quickly? It’s no-thing.” So what?! My brain is dying, you idiot! This is most serious!

When I first started having these wonderful experiences I thought I would have 3 months to live. I would get the circular whirling lights and stars too, and if you have never had them, it is just like in the cartoons (except without the little birds 😉 But in just an equally mysterious way, the blinking lights stopped appearing, and now I just get plain dizzy. Thus we see that the Hollywood glam dizziness with twinkling stars and laser show is gone. Now it’s trailer park dizzy. And the worst of it is in the opposite direction. This weekend I went swimming and when I lay down to rest and closed my eyes, I felt like I was in a roller coaster almost doing a 180 degree flip. The flips just went on and on, and obviously I thought I was going to heaven right then and there.

So I took out my laptop from its case today and what do I see next? There was this enormous spider right inside the case! Enormous here means more than an inch long, almost two, light color, but with a really wide, fat body and hairy legs. That’s all I could see in the fraction of a second that I spotted the creature, since I then instinctively threw the case away from me, onto the floor. “What happened?” asked another student puzzled. “There’s a big spider inside the case!” I explained. He then just gets up and kneels down next to case, picks it up and, almost sticking his nose inside it, asks “Where?”

I am just horrified thinking the spider would jump out and attack him any minute but he very calmly turns the case every which way, shaking it, looking for the spider. Nothing. He looks at me inquiringly. “It’s in there! And it’s big!” I emphatically warn him. He almost sticks his head inside the case again, then he finally spots the spider, who probably got scared with all the thrusting about and maybe tried to go for cover in one of the inside pockets. So the student just tears off a tiny bit of paper, like a 2-3 inch bit, and again, to my horror, sticks his hand in the case. I thought he would take off his shoe and beat the case to a pulp, but no, he opts for a tiny bit of inane paper. First thought that comes to my mind is that he is going to squish the creature inside the case (bleah!). But then, just as gingerly as when he first looked inside the case, he pursues the little thing inside the case – at first without success. He finally succeeds in grabbing it with the little torn paper, not squishing it all. Then he strolls down to the doorway, opens the door, and flings the spider back into the outdoors. (Theme of Born Free in the background ;-). All the while I just stood there, immobile, too startled to move, first because of the spider, then because of the absolute calmness of the guy. If it were now, I would have rushed after him to get a better look at the spider because I have never had such a huge spider near me in my life. “Did you see that?” I ask him. “It was immense!” He just looks at me with a bemused little smile, a chuckle in his eyes, probably thinking, “Women! One little spider and they get all nervous.” And no one more than me hates these stereotypes of women on little stools, cringing because of a white mouse underneath, but I don’t think it will be in this life that I am able to gingerly go after a gigantic, venomous, monstrous spider with a little piece of paper.

Next, a very uneasy thought creeps in about where it might have come from. Did it get in the case from my bedroom? Do they attack at nite? 🙂 Are there legions of them? OK, so I kid, but still it was odd, I don’t live on the ground floor. Then I remembered there is a construction site nearby, who knows? The thought of these huge spiders crawling about, specially at night, is not the most pleasant, in any event.

A few weeks ago I saw even bigger spiders, but they were on trees. In fact, I only caught sight of them because the sun was shinning right behind them and it completely illuminated their huge legs. Beautiful sight! But these were those pencil-thin legs, incredibly thin, and I don’t think these spiders are dangerous at all. They were probably more than 3 inches long, but they were just legs. But this one, really fat and hairy and huge, oh Jesus! Anyways, probably not the most aggressive or it would have attacked the student (or me!).

So I am walking a little while later on this concrete and pebbly path and I am wearing one of my favorite pair of beach sandals. They are made of some really cushony rubber, so unlike regular beach sandals, which usually have a hard and longlasting rubber sole, these are like heaven. They probably won’t last more than a summer, but it doesn’t matter. It feels like you are walking on a cushion no matter where you walk. But the sole is not very thick, maybe half an inch or so. However, it’s the quality and type of rubber that makes them so comfy.

So I am walking along and all of a sudden I feel a tiny sharp pain under my toe. “I probably stepped on a big pebble and the edge pressured my toe,” I think. So I walk a little more and feel the same pricking pain again. “That’s weird, I’m not seeing very sharp pebbles on this path.” And I continue walking. So then I go indoors, upstairs, and finally down again, climbing down the stairways, when I feel the same sharp little pain again. “Completely flat stairways, totally level, not a single possible pebble in view. What in the world???” I immediately take off the sandal to try to discover the answer to the mystery. I then spot a speck piercing through the sole, could it be a tack or tiny nail? I then prod and bend the backside of the sandal and a piece of glass is propelled into the air, having gotten lodged and stuck in the sole. I was very lucky because if it had been just a tiny bit bigger, I would have now a cut and bleeding toe. The bit of glass was big enough to slightly pierce the sole and prick my toe, but fortunately too tiny to do any further damage.

What is next, gigantic rolling boulders coming down the hallway when I go to my room?

This description made me burst out laughing when I read it! This is one messed up guy. No, he is not any female, in brain or emotion, he is just too messed up to know it though. And given who he hangs out with, he will sadly never get a clue.

The first workshop I attended addressed a simple, yet crucial question: what is feminism? Conference attendees debated the definition—is feminism about equal rights or equality, equal opportunity or equality of results? A young woman stood up in the back row. “I just want to remind everyone that we need to use trans-inclusive language when we talk about this definition,” she said. Huh? The discussion continued: Why is there a stigma around the word “feminism”? The answer: Homophobia. “People are either homophobic or unwilling to take on that fight,” a participant explained. Everyone nodded. I stayed silent, still confused over the trans-inclusive language comment—what did this have to do with feminism?

In a subsequent workshop, someone asked how NOW could attract more male members. The trans-inclusive language police would have none of it: “When we talk about gender, we can’t forget there are more than two genders. We don’t want to exclude transgender people.”

A male presenter admitted to applying to law school as “a radical lesbian feminist trapped in a man’s body,” whatever that is supposed to mean. Luckily, the law school had enough sense to reject his application. All this at a workshop, let alone a conference, designed to talk about feminism. This obsession with everything LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and however many more adjectives you want to lump on) would permeate the entire weekend, largely without purpose.

To find out more, continue reading this mostly delightful account of the last NOW conference on what feminism has degenerated into. Makes some of the same points I added to another article I blogged on – “Feminism, so much has changed – for the worse.”

p.s. I wonder if there is any woman who is so messed up to think she is a radical male homosexual activist trapped in a woman’s body. You know, this would mean a woman that would want to undergo a sex change so that she could stick it to other homos. Does it sound slightly unhinged to you? If so, this means you’re just a mean ol’ bigot. Or so would say the homo thought police. Liberals are the best when it comes to mental health, aren’t they?

Not that there is even anything remotely wrong in a woman thinking she is a radical homo activist trapped in this horrible woman’s body. I can only help thinking that liberal doctors would rush to the chance to operate immediately to liberate the radical trapped homo. However, if the same woman claimed she was an anguished homosexual man wanting to escape homosexuality while trapped in a woman’s body, we all know liberals would quickly lobotomize her before she could utter another word.

I read an excellent commentary on the Landis crisis – this was a few days ago – and there is no way I can remember exactly in which newspaper it was. That’s a great pity because it was a great commentary. In all the Tour de France brouhaha, it was the only article I saw that suggested something unique: split the sports world into two major categories – the doped and the non-doped.

I think this is a great idea. The author wrote it as a cynical piece, not really being serious, nevertheless I am dead serious. You know why I like this idea so much? Because it exposes the hypocrites in society for what they are. Everytime someone says “everybody knows lots of athletes are using dope,” exactly who is everybody? It is everyone that loves to turn a blind eye to everything that is currupt in society as long as the appearances are glossy and the cash is rolling in. This includes the athletes themselves, all the sports biz people, and last but by no means least, much of the public. So society wants to turn a blind eye to amphetamine and testosterone charged athletes? Make it like homosexuality – pro-homos say there is nothing wrong with it – then bring it out in the open and let people start realizing just how unhinged it is.

Now that the second Landis test has confirmed the testosterone anomally, it’s a grand moment to found the Tour de Dope. And we could take the opportunity to expand the hypocrisy exposure to other sport categories – everyone should have a legal “dope-spiked” category, track and field, football, swimming, everything. If society is currently willing to clap along with closed eyes to their little doped athletes, I say make those eyes wide open. People want to see athletes outperform and beat records every year? That’s what dope is for.

This idea works out for everyone involved. We live in a world that adores consuming drugs in enormous quantities (and evidently “drugs” here include alcohol)- why the “prejudice” regarding athletes? Doctors who are so maligned today because they are currently using their expertise to dope athletes can come out into the open and be hailed for their drugged cyborg strategies. Here is the grand opportunity for a doped society to see their “drugged beyond belief” athletes whizz by in every sport. Furthermore, many athletes are no more than prostitutes and will do just about anything for a million bucks and the attached celebrity status – including taking any sort of physical-altering cocktail. It’s not a morality issue for them. So let them go full blast into the drug universe. Do it out in the open, in full view of the audience even. Hypocrites should be exposed for what they are – it’s my philosophy.

And then you leave the athletes who just want to compete with their natural talents and physique have their own clean competitions. Ah, those boring non-doped slow folks. Anyone care for them anymore? They don’t come in first and they aren’t the strongest.

But they are the ones I would still want to watch and root for.

Did you know who mostly built the Colosseum in ancient Rome?

An estimated 12,000 Jewish slaves. I had never heard of this in my life!

more on the Colosseum from wiki:

Construction of the Colosseum began under the rule of Emperor Vespasian[1] in 72. It was completed by his son, Titus, in 80[1], with later improvements by Domitian. It was built at the site of Nero’s lake below his extensive palace, the Domus Aurea, which had been built covering the slope of the Palatine after the great fire of Rome in 64. Dio Cassius recounts that 9,000 wild animals were killed in the one hundred days of celebration which inaugurated the amphitheatre opening.

After the Colosseum’s first two years in operation, Vespasian’s younger son (the newly-designated Emperor Domitian) decided to sacrifice the ability to flood the arena in return for a hypogeum (literally meaning “underground”).


I watched a great documentary on how the Roman emperors strategically built everything from palaces to baths to temples as political and power consolidation maneuvers. The whole Nero episode of lunatic but profoundly complex mega-building is mind-blowing. The Nero complex makes Versailles look like a shanty 😉

more:

Late Roman history
The Colosseum was in continuous use until 217, when it was damaged by fire after a lightning strike. It was restored in 238 and gladiatorial games continued until Christianity gradually put an end to those parts of them which included the death of humans. The building was used for various purposes, mostly venationes, until 524. Two earthquakes (in 442 and 508) caused massive damage to the structure.

Medieval and Renaissance
In the Middle Ages, it was severely damaged by further earthquakes (847 and 1349), and was then converted into a fortress and a Christian church erected in one small part.

The marble that originally covered the façade was reused in constructions or burned to make quicklime.

During the Renaissance, but mostly in the 16th and 17th centuries, the ruling Roman families (from which many popes came) used it as a source of marble for the construction of St. Peter’s Basilica and the private palazzi of Roman families such as the Barberini: Quod non fecerunt Barbari, Barberini fecerunt; “What the Barbarians didn’t do, the Barberini did”

nice little anecdote 😉


The destructive forces of the circuses in the arenas kept growing and growing in attempts to satisfy the discontent of the Roman masses.

The first century of the Christian era probably marked the high point of the games. The spectacles had grown to such an extent that it seemed incredible that they could ever be surpassed. The dictator Sulla (93 B.C.) presented one hundred lions in the arena. Julius Caesar had four hundred. Pompey had six hundred lions, twenty elephants and four hundred ten leopards fighting Gaetulians armed with darts. Augustus in 10 A.D. exhibited the first tiger ever to be seen in Rome and had 3, 500 elephants. He boasted that he had ten thousand men killed in eight shows. After Trajan’s victory over the Dacians, he had eleven thousand animals killed in the arena.

Some say that Julius Caesar could be called the father of the games because under his regime they ceased to be an occasional exhibition of fairly modest proportions and became a national institution.

By the time of Augustus, the people regarded the games not as a luxury but as their right. Under the old Republic, the games lasted for sixteen days: fourteen chariot races, two trials for horses, and forty-eight theatricals. By the time of Claudius (50A.D.), there were ninety-three a year. This number was gradually increased to 123 days under Trajan and to 230 under Marcus Aurelius.

Augustus and several of the other emperors tried to limit the number of games, but it always produced mob uprisings. Marcus Aurelius disliked the games, but in his official position he had to attend. He used to sit in the royal box and dictate letters to his secretaries while the games were going on. The Roman crowds resented his negative behavior; and although he was one of the best emperors Rome ever had, as a result of his contempt for the games, he was also one of the most unpopular.

Both Caligula and Nero, probably the two worst rulers in Roman history, were greatly mourned by the crowds when they died because they always put on such extravagant games.

Where did the Romans get all of the animals they used in their entertainment of violence, sex, and bloody gore?

Emperor Trojan gave one set of games that lasted 122 days during which 11,000 people and 10,000 animals were killed. Emperor Titus had 5,000 wild animals and 4,000 domestic animals killed during the one hundred-day show to celebrate the opening of the Colosseum. In 249 A.D., Philip celebrated the one thousandth anniversary of the founding of Rome by giving games in which the following were killed: one thousand pairs of gladiators, thirty-two elephants, ten tigers, sixty lions, thirty leopards, ten hyenas, ten giraffes, twenty wild asses, forty wild horses, ten zebras, six hippos and one rhino.


Chronology summary

64 AD Rome Burns- The city of Rome was nearly destroyed in a catastrophic fire. The fire is said to have been set by Nero. Legend has it that ‘Rome burned while Nero fiddled’.
66 AD Judaea Rebels Against Rome- A rebellion broke out in Jerusalem against Roman rule. The Roman fortress of Antonia in Jerusalem was captured and the soldiers killed. The Romans dispatch an army from Syria to quell the revolt, but it was destroyed on the way to Jerusalem.
68 AD Year of the Four Emperors- The year 69 A.D. is known as the year of the four emperors. Nero was assassinated and civil war erupted to determine who would succeed him. In the course of that tumultuous year, Nero was succeeded by Galba who was followed by Otho. Otho was defeated by Vitellius and Vespasian finally established a new dynasty. Vespasian himself was the son of a tax collector from Reate. He represented a complete break with the Augustinian dynasties that preceded him.
70 AD Jerusalem Falls- Rome sent an enormous army under the command of Vespasian, to retake Judea. The Roman army quickly subdued the Jewish forces in the Galilee and laid siege to Jerusalem. Vespasian was recalled to Rome and the siege continued by his son, Titus. Titus succeeded in capturing Jerusalem on the ninth day of Ab (according to the Jewish calendar). He burned Jerusalem, killing or selling into slavery tens of thousands of Jews.
73 AD Masada Falls- The Fortress of Masada, occupied by Jewish zealots opposed to Rome, held out for three years. Masada was located in the Judean Desert near the shores of the Dead Sea. When it became clear that they could hold out no longer, the defenders of Masada committed mass suicide rather then become captives of the Romans.
78 AD Kushan Dynasty- The Kushan Dynasty was established by Kanishka. The Kushan Empire extended from Benares and Kabul to the Vindhayas. The Kushan capital was at Peshawar. The Kushans thrived on the Chinese-Roman trade that passed through their Empire.
79 AD Mount Vesuvius Explodes- In 79 A.D., Mount Vesuvius erupted. The eruption destroyed the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Most of the cities’ populations managed to flee, but 20,000 inhabitants were killed.
80 AD Coloseum Dedicated-Vespasian had ordered the Colosseum built, but it fell to his son Titus to dedicate it. It was used for gladiator games until 404 AD.
89 AD Domitian’s Reign Of Terror- Domitian who succeeded Titus Vespasianus (his older brother), commenced a reign of terror after an abortive coup against him. Domitian levied heavy taxes on the provinces. Domitian was assassinated in 96 A.D.
96 – 180 AD Five Good Emperors – Starting with Emperor Marcus Nerva, Rome was ruled by five individuals who became known as the “Good Emperors”. The Emperors maintained both domestic tranquility and relative peace on the borders. They were known for building roads and other large civil projects.

The Five Emperors were:
96-98 A.D. Marcus Nerva
98-117 A.D. Marcus Traianus
117-138 A.D. Publiius Hadrianus (Hadrian)
138-161 A.D. Antoninus Pius
161-180 A.D. Marcus Aurelius

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