Weekend Open Thread

| February 21, 2020

Mardi Gras beads and eye masks. (Getty/tripsavvy.com)

As I mentioned in January 3’s Weekend Open Thread, the Mardi Gras Season runs from January 6 through February 25 this year. Mardi Gras is February 25, 2020. February 26, 2020, is Ash Wednesday.

Mardi Gras means “Fat Tuesday”. There is a history behind this.

During the medieval period, they didn’t have the meat processing and refrigeration technology that we have today. Animals, meant for consumption, were killed and processed for long-term storage. They ate this meat throughout the winter.

Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the Lenten Season, which runs to Holy Thursday. The last part of Holy Week is another season, Easter Tridium. The “Lenten fast” runs from Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday, sans Sundays.

Christians exercised fasting during this season. As Ash Wednesday approached, people faced the reality that non-consumed meats will go bad during Lent. Consumption increased until Mardi Gras. Eating as much of this meat as possible before it goes bad required feasting. People “fattened up” until “Fat Tuesday”, the “now or never” day.

This is one story behind the evolution of Mardi Gras. There are other stories. This day is also known as “Shrove Tuesday” and “Pancake Tuesday”.

If you have not tried a Mardi Gras cake (King Cake), your window of opportunity to try it this year may be closing.

Enjoy Your Weekend.

Category: Open thread

Comments (77)

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  1. 5th/77th FA says:


    • ChipNASA says:

      MOTHERF……aw shit.
      Well, here’s the crown and scepter for the WOT Firsts.

      Anna ONE…..

      KOB Drop kicks me right in the nads.


  2. ChipNASA says:


    • 5th/77th FA says:

      BAM BAM BAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FIRE MISSION FIRE MISSION FIRE MISSION!!!!!!!!!!


      Take that ya baaaaaasssturds! The King of Battle has blowed the competition all to Hell and over half of MO. FIRST on the Coveted EARNED NEVER AWARDED/GIVEN TAH Friday Weekend Open Thread!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Hot wings, cat heads with bacon and Cheese Grits with Shrimps all around

      Pappy Pass me one of them thar Yuenglings!

      • AW1Ed says:

        “…Cheese Grits with Shrimps…”
        Now where did you get that idea?

      • The Stranger says:

        I’m at work and, contrary to popular belief, Engineers aren’t ALWAYS drinking 🥃🍺!
        (Just most of the time).
        Also, to my fellow technically-minded brethren, Happy Engineer Week! I’m an Engineer Officer and an Electrical Engineer in the civilian world so I qualify twice over!

    • Aysel says:

      or not 🙁 shoot, I’m even at work and I thought I’d finally caught it 🙁

      • 5th/77th FA says:

        So very close Asyel so very close. The race was on and Pride was in the backstretch, Heartache moving on the insides, My Tears were holding back and made the Chipster fall. Couldn’t kick you in the ‘nads, cause…well…you know! This was hard fought, blank slate when I hit the post button, and when the checkered flag dropped all three posts were there. Had to be mere nano seconds. This is, IIRC, a record high finish for you. The consolation prize for you is an extry serving of the orasted beef beef with taters, onion, carrots, peas, and brown gravy. Get another cat head, the pot licker is extry good. I’ll try to leave this little ditty right here.

  3. Hack Stone says:

    Hack Stone would like to take this opportunity to claim TAH Weekend Open Thread First Post for Friday, February 21, 2020.

    In the event that Hack Stone has not secured the highly coveted and rarely awarded TAHVWeekend Open Thread First Post, he would like to announce his candidacy for Callahan County Texas Sheriff. Hack Stone would like to remind the voters of a Callahan County that he took a “bullet” for his country, that bullet being when the Enlisted Club ran out of the good beers and he had to resort to consuming a Coors Light, otherwise known as a “Silver Bullet”. Hack Stone will work to help pass legislation banning high capacity magazine subscriptions, because no one needs more than one copy of National Lampoon.

    Finally, Hack Stone would like to remind everyone to please consult the All Points Logistics website to view the times and locations that Phil Monkress will be working balls this weekend.

    • Hack Stone says:

      Hack Stone blames his coming in fourth of that cheap ass cell phone provided by the Vice President of the proud but humble woman owned business that sells software to the federal government. Seriously, who the hell ever heard of a cellphone that you had to deposit a quarter in?

    • ChipNASA says:

      I think that it’s a given that Phil Monkress will be working balls this weekend. As a matter of fact, Phil Monkress almost *always* working balls this weekend. And as a point of discussion, it’s rare that the All Points Logistics website Events schedule changes because, it’s usually understood that only under extremely rare circumstances, AND, as yet, those circumstances have yet to present themselves, because Phil Monkress has an unprecedented unbroken record working balls this weekend and every weekend.
      Just an observation that may or may not be true.

      • Hack Stone says:

        Hack Stone just strolled over to the All Points Logistics website, and the photo of the President/CEO does not have him wearing his SEAL Trident. Just wondering if any of the All Points Logistics employees ever asked why his service a Navy SEAL is no longer splashed all over their website?

    • A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

      Phil Monkress will likely be blowing winos behind bus stops again this weekend.

  4. Roh-Dog says:

    I look away for 5 minutes…
    Congrats Redleg!
    Have a GREAT weekend y’all!
    I can wait for Lent, 2 for 1 and fresh Filet O Fishes!!! Mmmmm good.

  5. Tallywhagger says:

    Anyone know how Willy is doing?

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      He did post something earlier this week, but has more stuff to go through, unfortunately. Just keep Willy in your thoughts while we wait for news from him.

  6. A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

    Umpteenth and Honorary First once again.


  7. Commissioner Wretched says:

    I see that the King of Battle is FIRST once again, thus all is right with the world. With that thought I offer this week’s trivia … for him, for you, for everyone!

    Was the original plan for Mt. Rushmore to have someone other than U.S. presidents carved into the mountain?
    By Commissioner Wretched

    So this week, we have one of those “created” holidays.

    I refer, of course, to President’s Day.

    Back when I was a kid, we had Lincoln’s Birthday and Washington’s Birthday – and we had both of those as days off from school, too! But some time in the early 70s, some silly person decided it would save money if they combined both birthdays, and added in a nod to all the other presidents and called it “President’s Day.”

    I guess it was a good idea – saved the government the cost of an extra holiday – and with it always falling on a Monday, it gives folks a three-day weekend. Unless they work for newspapers, that is.

    Not to worry, though. I get my time off when I need it.

    Right now, of course, I don’t need time off – I need to share some trivia! So let’s get to it!

    Did you know …

    … the first American woman to go to medical school was admitted as a joke? Elizabeth Blackwell (1821-1910) applied to Geneva Medical School in New York after no other American school would admit her. Blackwell’s admission was a practical joke on her, but she turned the tables – she graduated first in her class in 1849, continued training in London and Paris, and set up a successful medical practice in New York in 1851. She opened her own medical college in 1868 and was the first Professor of Gynecology at the London School of Medicine for Women in 1875. (So there.)

    … Alexander the Great encouraged his men to shave? The Macedonian conqueror (356 BC-323 BC) wanted his soldiers to be clean-shaven so that enemies could not grab them by the beard while in battle. (Good idea at the time, no doubt.)

    … all of the pandas in the world are owned by the government of China? Even the ones you see at American zoos are owned by China, which rents them out at a rate of about $1 million a year. (You have to hope that the pandas are getting a cut of that action.)

    … the faces on Mount Rushmore in South Dakota were originally going to be someone other than presidents? The southeastern face of the mountain in the Black Hills features the faces of George Washington (1732-1799), Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), and Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919), all of whom had served as President of the United States. South Dakota state historian Doane Robinson (1856-1946) actually had other people in mind for the mountain – popular folks from the Old West. Robinson wanted originally to use the faces of Buffalo Bill Cody (1846-1917), Sioux chief Red Cloud (1822-1909), and others, but was talked out of it because their faces were not immediately recognizable and thus would not draw tourists. Lead sculptor Gutzon Borglum (1867-1941) talked him into using the faces of presidents instead. (The rest, as they say, is history. Who the heck is this “they,” anyway?)

    … a baby blue whale gains about 200 pounds a day during its first year of life? (Considering that they only eat krill and tiny sea plants, that’s pretty impressive, you have to admit.)

    … one of the most popular novels of the 20th Century was turned down by a major magazine? “The New Yorker” magazine refused to run an excerpt from “The Catcher in the Rye,” by J.D. Salinger (1919-2010), on the grounds that the characters were “unbelievable” and the writing was “show-offy.” The novel, which turned out to be one of the best of the century, was also turned down by publisher Harcourt Brace because the executives were unsure if the main character, Holden Caulfield, was crazy.

    … the most well-known actor to play James Bond always wore a hairpiece? Sir Sean Connery (born 1930), the best-known of the eight different actors to portray British superspy James Bond 007 in the movies, began going bald when he was 17. During the years he played Bond, Connery always wore a toupee. (Maybe, but he’s James Bond. Who cares about a hairpiece?)

    … there is a flower that can forecast the weather? The scarlet pimpernel is called “the poor man’s weatherglass.” If the flower is closed, rain is expected, but if it is open, the day will be sunny and pleasant. (That’s a better average than most weathermen on television, you know.)

    … by the age of sixty, most people have lost half of their taste buds? (And the half that’s left isn’t doing so hot, either.)

    … snakes hear with their tongues? A snake does not have ears as we know them. But their tongue is extremely sensitive to sound vibrations, and that’s why the snake constantly flicks its tongue out – it’s picking up sound waves.

    … the word “taser” is an acronym? Tasers, the devices which deliver a shock to uncooperative suspects courtesy of the police, are named such because of inventor Jack Cover (1920-2009), who created the device. Cover was a huge fan of Thomas A. Swift, the hero of a series of young adult novels by Victor Appleton (born Howard R. Garis, 1873-1962). The acronym stands for “Thomas A. Swift’s Electric Rifle.” (Whatever. I just don’t want to get hit with one.)

    … there is no butter in buttermilk? Buttermilk is actually lower in fat than regular milk, as well. The “butter” in the name comes from the origins of the beverage, which resulted from the process of churning butter. The “buttermilk” was the part that didn’t end up as part of the butter itself. (The taste of buttermilk doesn’t really bother me. It’s those designs that it leaves in the glass that really turn my stomach.)

    Now … you know!

    • Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH B Woodman says:

      I remember the Tom Swift series of books. My father had a sizable collection of them (Tom Swift and his whatever), written in the teens through the thirties.
      Exciting stuff for a young boy back then.

      • David says:

        No one mentioned Tom Swifties: a once popular craze when the words at the end referred back in a pun to the beginning, usually linked by “Tom said”. Examples might be “I only have spades, clubs, and diamonds” said Tom heartlessly. “I’m losing my hair!” Tom bawled. “Who killed the Greek woods god?” Tom said deadpan…you get the idea. Would have thought Jeff LPH would have if no one else!

    • rgr1480 says:

      …The “buttermilk” was the part that didn’t end up as part of the butter itself. (The taste of buttermilk doesn’t really bother me. It’s those designs that it leaves in the glass that really turn my stomach.)</blockquote.

      You really need to crumple up some cornbread into the glass before you pour in the buttermilk; stir … drink.


    • NHSparky says:

      Buttermilk: the first stage of ranch dressing.

    • ninja says:


      Reference Alexander the Great encouraging his troops to shave their beards:

      Read a while back that was a myth.


      “On September 30, 331 b.c., as Alexander the Great prepared for a decisive showdown with the Persian emperor for control of Asia, he ordered his men to shave.”

      “What can explain this unprecedented command? When the commander Parmenio asked the reason, according to the ancient historian Plutarch, Alexander replied, “Don’t you know that in battles there is nothing handier to grasp than a beard?”

      “But there is ample cause to doubt Plutarch’s explanation. Plutarch and historians misunderstood the order because they neglected the most relevant fact, namely that Alexander had dared to do what no self-respecting Greek leader had ever done before: shave his face, likening himself to the demigod Heracles, rendered in painting and sculpture in the immortal splendor of youthful, beardless nudity.”

      “Alexander wished above all, as he told his generals before the battle, that each man would see himself as a crucial part of the mission. They would certainly see this more clearly if each of them looked more like their heroic commander.”

      BTW: Sean Connerly was the BEST JAMES BOND EVER.

      Thank You again, CW, for sharing. You are helping me sharpen up on Trivia for my nightly watch of JEOPARDY!


      • Commissioner Wretched says:

        Fascinating stuff, ninja! My research turned up the same information, but the column doesn’t allow me to do much more than a brief story (except for the headline item, that is). I had to go with what was short, sweet, and to the point – and at least plausibly true.

        And thank you for the kind words about the column! I’m glad you enjoy it.

    • Hondo says:

      FWIW: although it’s commonly called “Presidents’ Day”, that is actually not the legal name of the Monday Federal holiday in February. Per 5 USC 6103(b), that holiday’s legal name is still “Washington’s Birthday”.


  8. cc senor says:

    Never been to a Mardi Gras anything but did watch a Rosen Montag parade in Koln (Cologne) back in the 80s. No beads, but lots of candy.

  9. 26Limabeans says:

    Not even close. Congrats to the KOB.
    Someone recently commented about the clock
    being fixed. I blame the clock being fixed.

    Nice sunny day here. Cold as shit but still..
    a nice sunny day here.

  10. marinedad61 says:

    Stolen Valor and the VFW.

    Well, it happened.
    Yesterday, someone posted in a VFW group on Facebook,
    with a link to the VFW Join Online page,
    and asked if there is something troubling on this VFW page.

    ANSWER – There is NO UPLOAD function for files (proof),
    (although VFW Auxiliary has this upload function,
    and REQUIRES proof for online membership approval).

    ANYONE can join the VFW online as an “At-Large” member
    Just click the check boxes for eligibility, and your HONESTY,
    oh, and PAY…
    and you get a VFW At-Large Membership Card.

    Yes, many are outraged. But this isn’t new.
    It has been this way for several years.
    More, this HAS been brought up at past National Conventions,
    but the 70 year olds who are there to drink and celebrate themselves
    don’t seem to see or understand the risk of
    INFILTRATION of the VFW, by
    good service but ineligible veterans,
    bad service veterans (we see plenty of those here),
    and outright Military Phonies and Stolen Valor fakes.

    70 comments in, the
    Deputy Director of Membership, VFW National
    chimed in with comments, and
    ADMITTED there is NO VERIFICATION of At-Large online new members,
    UNLESS there is something that triggers them.
    Here it is…….
    [Rick McKenna (VFW National)] –
    The National Headquarters is constantly performing our due diligence with regards to online membership applications, and we are constantly improving our capabilities and procedures to ensure that those veterans who apply online are properly vetted for membership.
    If there is ever a question/discrepancy about the member at large application concerning eligibility,
    the Membership Department reaches out to the applicant requesting appropriate documentation for final disposition on approval/disapproval.
    If no supporting documentation is submitted, the application is disapproved.
    Our database captures these disapproved applicants and they cannot reapply online for membership as they will be rejected automatically.
    If you have questions or concerns about a specific member’s eligibility,
    you can contact us at membership@vfw.org
    or by phone at 888.JOIN.VFW (564-8839).
    (end paste)

    So there you go.
    Phonies and ineligibles get REJECTED by a VFW Post
    (TWICE at MY Post),
    then go ONLINE and get ACCEPTED.
    Then, these turds come back to “transfer” from At-Large to join a Post,
    any Post, sometimes the SAME Post.

    VFW National puts this on VFW Posts around the country,
    who should (per By-Laws) review ALL transfers,
    whether from another Post, or At-Large.
    Of course, we know that doesn’t always happen,
    because many VFW Posts either don’t know the By-Laws,
    or choose not to follow them.

    I am a strong advocate of the VFW overall,
    but this really gets my goat.
    THIS is why I am 90% geared up for a trip to RENO in July,
    for the 2020 VFW National Convention.
    NOT as a representative of my Post, District, nor Dept.
    NOT as a happy conventioneer, either.

    See the Richard Calvert page (here) for my opening salvo.

    • Ret_25X says:

      the really infuriating thing here is that remediation is harder and costs far more than prevention.

      I don’t believe they don’t understand. I think they understand just fine.

      It’s the work involved no one likes.

      • marinedad61 says:

        Some suspect that National is happy to have the income stream sent directly to National HQ,
        while letting Posts around the country deal with the collateral damage done by poor policy at National.
        Not a nice way to treat your Post member volunteers.
        And, there are going to be ineligibles and phonies uncovered and dealt with now.. for the next 50 years.

  11. Sparks says:

    Top 30. I’m in the platoon anyway.

  12. thebesig says:

    President Obama made mention of the Recovery Act, something he signed in 2009. He credited this act with over a decade of job growth. President Trump rejected what Obama was implying:


  13. thebesig says:

    “Progressive” attends a Trump rally. Notices that Trump supporters do not fit the stereotype that the left assigns them. She also sees their enthusiasm and momentum:

    • Sparks says:

      Fatphobic? Really that’s a thing? She’s not sh-tting me?

      So, a person, say a woman, says she’s having trouble losing weight and wonders why…publicly, and I suggest maybe cutting back to a couple of pork roasts a day for a while, makes me fatphobic?

      Who knew?

  14. thebesig says:

    Demonstrators steal the show at a Bernie rally. One of the demonstrators was topless:


  15. thebesig says:

    Truth or fiction? A teenager is placed under house arrest for questioning a transgender’s gender:


  16. thebesig says:

    One of the things that the mainstream media does is that when a Republican is charged, he or she is identified as such. When a Democrat is charged, just mention the office title then mention the party affiliation somewhere in the article.


  17. thebesig says:

    Robert Lee Noye 52

    A woman was forced to watch Roots in order to “understand her racism”. When it appeared that she was going to move, Robert Lee Noye, 52, threatened to kill her and to spread her body parts. These individuals know each other, as they had interacted with each other for almost 20 years.


    • Sparks says:

      I think Haley’s “Roots” was as close to the truth of the south and slavery as Mitchell’s “Gone With The Wind”. That said if the guy wanted to show the history of slavery to anyone, the public library would have been a far better place to start than the 1976 book and 1977 TV fiascos titled “Roots”.

      But, as it is said, if all you have is a hammer, everything is a nail, so then if your head just keeps flies off 30% of your shoulders, everything going into it ends up being shit.

  18. NHSparky says:

    Not first, not last. Not trying to dig myself out of a snowbank this week, anyway.

  19. ninja says:

    Congrats to KoB for another WOT FIRST!

    In honor of KoB and his love for Westerns as well as Music Appreciation (hat tip to Hondo), am sharing a Classic from the “Yellow Brick Road” Album.

    “Roy Rogers”.

    • 5th/77th FA says:

      Tanks Troop! Lubs me some old school Cowboy Pictures. A lot of the ones I watch on HandI or the ME TV I very seldom saw when they were FIRST broadcast. We only had CBS and a very fuzzy PBS when growing older (I never did grow up). Right now Gunsmoke is at season 16. Forgot to mention this, but last Friday on the Wagon Train Episode it was the FIRST one that Chris Hale was going to end up becoming the Train Boss. Lee Marvin was one of the bad guys; he and his henchmen had the drop on everyone. Charlie Wooster distracted them all by bouncing a cast iron skillet off the head of one of the bad guys which enabled the others to tackle Marvin and his pards. Thought of Ex-PH2 and her home defence weapons choice. Lone Ranger hasn’t shown up yet, but I got my fingers crossed. I must admit that some of my appreciation for the old shows is the classic charm and beauty of the actresses without all the trash that is on these days. I’m a Jeopardy fan too. Get mad at the contestants when they won’t listen as I give them the answers.

      Trivia question for the day. What did Dale Evans and Trigger have in common? They both liked it when Roy mounted them. 😆 😆 😆 I’ll go to my corner now.

  20. ninja says:

    Joe Biden is losing it. In His Mind. Again.

    You Be The Judge.

    “Biden Claims He Was Arrested Back in the ’70s Trying To Visit Nelson Mandela – But No One Remembers It”


    “Former vice president and 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden is now bizarrely claiming he was arrested with the UN ambassador trying to visit Nelson Mandela in South Africa back in the ‘70s.”

    “There’s just one problem: the UN ambassador at the time said he doesn’t recall ever being arrested with Biden – and neither does anyone else.”


  21. Graybeard says:

    Was busy trying to upgrade my *nix version when this dropped, not fighting hplip to get it to see my new printer.

    Son-in-law told me his alternator died today. Gonna try to pull it tomorrow (he can’t as he has a pacemaker) and get a new one in so they can get to church Sunday, school/work Monday.

    Whatever, still FIRST in the hearts and minds of my wife, kids, and grandkids.

    • ninja says:


      On what you wrote:

      “still FIRST in the hearts and minds of my wife, kids, and grandkids.”

      Amen, Amen, Amen.

  22. Skippy says:

    It’s Mardi Gras up on the mountain here too
    Big parade tomorrow. Our daughter won second place
    On the mask contest and pick up 15 bucks in one dollar
    Golden coins, 🎉🎉🎉🎉
    Not bad for a 7 year old kid
    Wife had her last reconstruction surgery on Wednesday
    The light is at hand at the end of the tunnel
    I need a vacation LMAO !!!!!
    Maybe a weekend in Callahan Co. Texas


  23. OldCorpsTanker72 says:

    TAH is now officially fighting a losing battle. Got a copy of the American Legion magazine (March, 2020) today. There’s an article on pages 36-38 that tells me that I am officially a “Vietnam Veteran.” Yep, that’s right. Never been closer to Vietnam than California, but I served on active duty between 1955 and 1975, so damned if I’m not a genuine Vietnam vet! Hell, why not make me a Scout Sniper Ranger Recon Seal POW while you’re at it, American Legion? You people are supposed to be helping with the problem, but I call BS on that. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM. Take my membership and shove it where the sun don’t shine. Rant over.

    • Mason says:

      Fewer and fewer people serving since the end of the draft. I’ve read that for my generation it’s less than 1% that serve. If these VSOs want to remain relevant (and profitable) they’ll need to expand their definitions more and more. I fully expect by the time I’m in my 70’s they’ll have anyone who ever wore a uniform venerated as saints.

  24. thebesig says:

    Sarcophagus dedicated to Romulus discovered in Roman Forum. Romulus was one of Rome’s founders:


  25. Cameron Kingsley says:

    From the bowels of what we call the internet, it’s the latest challenge that can potentially have deadly consequences. Due check out the links to the Facebook posts in the article.


  26. Thunderstixx says:

    90 years ago this week the Planet Pluto was discovered and joined the family of the Solar System in our little corner of the Milky Way Galaxy.
    And yes, Pluto is still a planet, no matter WHAT a bunch of whiny little bitch leftist scientists say.


  27. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    Weird. A whistleblower from the prior administration found dead of an apparent suicide.


    An expert in Jihad and related topics, who warned about the prior administration’s activities.


  28. 26Limabeans says:

    Here is an example of a someone doing the right
    thing when no one is looking:


  29. Cameron Kingsley says:

    Looks like the left is at it again. If they keep this up, one of these days, it’s not going to end well at all for them. These two better watch it. https://www.dailywire.com/news/couple-used-car-to-run-kids-on-bikes-off-the-road-because-they-had-trump-flags-cops-say

  30. Claw says:

    Given the recent surge, here’s a snapshot of the current numbers on the FY20 Valor Vultures Tote Board:

    Army – 10 & 1/2 (Plus 1/3rd)

    Navy – 8 & 1/3rd

    Marines – 9 & 1/3rd

    Air Force – 1/2 + 1/2 + 1/2 + 1/2

    Coast Guard – Zero

    • marinedad61 says:

      You’d think there would be more Phony Pilots,
      which would steer the numbers towards Air Force,
      although all branches have pilots.