Tag Archives: Misc.

Happy Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is a date of great importance for the Mexican and Chicano communities. It marks the victory of the Mexican Army over the French at the Battle of Puebla. Althought the Mexican army was eventually defeated, the “Batalla de Puebla” came to represent a symbol of Mexican unity and patriotism. With this victory, Mexico demonstrated to the world that Mexico and all of Latin America were willing to defend themselves of any foreign intervention. Especially those from imperialist states bent on world conquest.

Cinco de Mayo’s history has its roots in the French Occupation of Mexico. The French occupation took shape in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War of 1846-48. With this war, Mexico entered a period of national crisis during the 1850’s. Years of not only fighting the Americans but also a Civil War, had left Mexico devastated and bankrupt. On July 17, 1861, President Benito Juarez issued a moratorium in which all foreign debt payments would be suspended for a brief period of two years, with the promise that after this period, payments would resume.

The English, Spanish and French refused to allow president Juarez to do this, and instead decide d to invade Mexico and get payments by whatever means necessary. The Spanish and English eventually withdrew, but the French refused to leave. Their intention was to create an Empire in Mexico under Napoleon III. Some have argued that the true French occupation was a response to growing American power and to the Monroe Doctrine (America for the Americans). Napoleon III believed that if the United States was allowed to prosper indescriminantly, it would eventually become a power in and of itself.

In 1862, the French army began its advance. Under General Ignacio Zaragoza, 5,000 ill-equipped Mestizo and Zapotec Indians defeated the French army in what came to be known as the “Batalla de Puebla” on the fifth of May.

In the United States, the “Batalla de Puebla” came to be known as simply “5 de Mayo” and unfortunately, many people wrongly equate it with Mexican Independence which was on September 16, 1810, nearly a fifty year difference. Over, the years Cinco de Mayo has become very commercialized and many people see this holiday as a time for fun and dance. Oddly enough, Cinco de Mayo has become more of Chicano holiday than Mexican one. Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on a much larger scale here in the United States than it is in Mexico. People of Mexican descent in the United States celebrate this significant day by having parades, mariachi music, folklorico dancing and other types of festive activities.

 

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Get Forever Stamps Now, Postage Is Going Up

Sending a letter will soon be a little more expensive, the U.S. Postal Service announced Tuesday. The price for a first-class mail stamp will increase 2 cents to 44 cents, starting May 11. But until the new prices go into effect, customers can buy “Forever Stamps” at the current 42-cent rate.

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The World’s Smallest Postal Service

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The World’s Smallest Postal Service (WSPS) is a teeny tiny transcription service and roaming post office based in the San Francisco Bay Area and also available online.

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Lea Redmond is the Postmaster, setting up her tiny mobile office in cafes and shops where passers-by can write a letter and have it turned into a “world’s smallest letter.” The letter ($8.00) is transcribed on a miniature desk in the tiniest of script, sealed with a miniscule wax seal with the sender’s initial pressed into it, packaged up with a magnifying glass in a glassine envelope, and finished off with a large wax seal. It is a double delight: for both the sender and the recipient, and the WSPS is very happy to provide this important service to the world.

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Check the calendar to find out the schedule and whereabouts of the WSPS, or peruse the website and order letters online for a virtual experience. The WSPS is also available for special events and parties.

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Designer of Pringles Can Buried in His Creation

Dr Fredric J. Baur, who was 89, had told his family to ensure his final resting place was the inside of one of his most famous creations.

They honored his request by having his ashes buried in a Pringles tube.  You can read the article here.

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What Is A Crystal Skull?

The crystal skulls actually exist.  They are a number of human skull models fashioned from blocks of clear or milky quartz crystal rock, claimed to be pre-Columbian Mesoamerican artifacts by their alleged finders. The skulls are often claimed to exhibit paranormal phenomena by some members of the New Age movement, and have often been portrayed as such in fiction, most notably in the film Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Many crystal skulls are claimed to be pre-Columbian, usually attributed to the Aztec or Mayan civilizations.  People who believe in the psychic power of crystal skulls say that the skulls are a center of radiant psychic energy and have the power to increase happiness and improve people’s lives just by being held, handled and spoken with; others have suggested that crystal skulls can be used like crystal balls, to aid divination.   Claims of the healing and supernatural powers of crystal skulls have no support in the mainstream scientific community.  Some believe that the ancient Crystal Skulls are the computers of the ancients, they contain important information that help humanity to pass through it current series of challenges to take us into a Golden Age.  Others say they were a powerful tool for healing the body, mind, and spirit, by ancient civilizations.  More information about the subject can be found here.

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Pop Candy Reader of the Day

Pop Candy” is a great popular culture blog written by Whitney Matheson and published by USA Today.  Today I was picked as their “Reader of the Day” and you can check out my bio by clicking here.

 

 

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