04 December 2020

4 December 12020

282,392   deaths in America from the current pandemic. Thanks, Gutless Mitch, you who like to call yourself the grim reaper in honor of the part you’ve played in the catastrophe. It’s Friday, 4 December 12020, which means it’s Farmer’s Day (Ghana), Navy Day (India), Gospel Day (Marshall Islands), Thai Environment Day (Thailand), Tupou I Day (Tonga), and National Cookie Day (United States). Today’s saint is, as always, Clement of Alexandria, the philosophically-inclined church father who believed that matter was eternal and could neither be created nor destroyed, thus challenging the power of God according to the western branch of the church, who demoted him for it a thousand years after his death. (This is from memory, so don’t quote me on it.) It’s Fred Armisen’s birthday. On this day in history the Dei Gratia came across the soon-to-be-infamous ghost ship Mary Celeste off the Azores, adrift and deserted in 11872. It was apparent that the captain and crew must have abandoned the ship and taken to the lifeboat for some reason—but that reason was never determined. As the story was told and retold over the years various sensational details were added to heighten the mystery. In the end, however, it all comes down to one thing—somebody, presumably the captain, made the wrong decision in an emergency. In hindsight we can say that they all probably should have stayed aboard the ship, in that the ship survived and the lifeboat apparently perished. But we aren’t privy to whatever information they had at the time. The captain must have believed that the ship was in imminent danger or else he would not have ordered everyone to take to the lifeboat. We don’t know what the emergency was, but that fact doesn’t allow us to second-guess the captain, or whoever made the decision. Still, had they not abandoned ship, the odds are that I would be writing about something else this 4th of December.

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