Fun with History

With only bad news surrounding us, it is our serious obligation to set aside time to laugh and have fun. Surviving this virus depends upon it. Our lives depends upon it.

This is not an exaggeration. ‘Laughter is the best medicine’ is a maxim we have all heard, and need to take to heart.

I have found fun in remote trivia nights with friends and family. Not only does it bring out participants’ sense of humor and spawn a lot of jokes, the questions we have found to quiz each other have contained gems of knowledge and history. I got a great reception from a series of questions I sprung on my friends, derived from historical facts I unearthed when researching the setting for my books.

Q: What was the most common lunch of working people in New York City during the 1850s?

A: Oysters! They abounded. The salty Hudson River was chuck-full of them. Some shells discarded by the Mahican Tribe are still visible along the shores in the Hudson Valley today.

Those who can’t remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”  George Santayana 1863-1952


Much has been written about the need to know our collective history. Should we burn books which reflect old stereotypes, prejudices and a myopic view of the world? Should we topple statues? We should not stop freedom of speech, regardless of its form. When we encounter these reminders of the past we encounter a hopeful sign of how far our collective mentality has come. Even statues of our imperfect forefathers remind us they were human, encouraging us to see the good they accomplished, understand their actions in the context of their times and revile their failures. If we take away statues to people who were flawed, who would remain standing? Let’s continue the dialogue, hear from all sides, and raise our collective consciousness even further.

In the meantime, let’s make history fun. If you and your friends have a game night, check out my website I will post new History’s Mysteries Trivia Questions every week, for people to intersperse in their questions. Let me know if you stump your fellow players!

Now go relax and enjoy yourselves. I’m serious.

© Jane F. Collen June 19, 2020™ what goes around, comes around


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