It was almost one thousand years ago on December 15, 1025 that Byzantine emperor Basil II died, turning his younger brother, longtime co-emperor Constantine, into the new sole emperor, Constantine VIII. And when I say longtime co-emperor, I mean a looooooong time. Basil and Constantine were officially named co-emperors when the former was four and the latter two years old, and Connie “served” as co-emperor for a staggering 63 years under his father, step-father, uncle and finally older brother. The 65 year old Constantine had spent his entire life living it up as nobility and giving a shit less about government affairs… thus when Constantine became THE man in Byzantine, it was predictably bad. Constantine VIII’s short, but ultimately ineffective reign is often considered to be a turning point in the success of the Byzantine empire, which was overthrown by the Ottomans four centuries later.
And after that lesson about why political outsiders should just be left alone, let’s move on to answering this week’s Share Your World questions from Di!
As a kid, did you have roller skates, a go-kart or a push bike?
I had roller skates (the real kind, not those modified ice skates) and a regular bike. There was a tricycle too that I probably rode at some time, but am too young to recall it. My bike braked by pushing back on the pedals, so the first time I tried to ride a bike with brakes on the handlebars, I about got myself killed. Also, while I could roller skate, I never learned how to stop short of just waiting for myself to slow down or grabbing on to something for dear life…
Also, did you belong to a gang or just hang out with your friends?
I grew up in the day where being seen wearing the wrong colors might get you shot by a gang member. OK, maybe not so much in my neighborhood, but still…. gangs have a much more sinister connotation to me as opposed to someone who might be thinking of the knife wielding greasers of West Side Story. Lucky for me, I was a loner much of my life and didn’t hang out with anyone…
What is the best present, birthday or otherwise, you can remember as a child?
Oh, there were a lot of things that kept me happy and occupied for a short time. The Nintendo Entertainment System for Christmas of 1987 brought me (and my sisters and even parents) years of enjoyment. The RBI Baseball game I was gifted for my following birthday fueled a love of the sport that lasted for three decades.
Then there’s the last gift I ever got as a “child,” when I graduated from high school six weeks before my 18th birthday….. and which I still have.
If a friend stayed over, did you have a midnight feast or did you go to bed and sleep?
It was the opposite with me when I did have a best friend. I practically lived at his house during the summers of 1987-88. I don’t know about feasts, but we were usually up late playing video games, watching movies or The Three Stooges…
Gratitude: What gives your day a kick start?
Well, actually getting out of bed helps. Why on earth do people use snooze buttons anyway?
I loved my real roller skates..even when they brought me to ER…. ;O)
We had to just throw some dirt on it because we were too poor to need the ER…
Real roller skates and a pedal brake bike for me…..I can remember losing my skate key frequently until I wised up and put it on a string around my neck. I did OK on the bikes but skating made me famous for turning many a sidewalk red with my blood.
Now that makes me wonder if Zeeba would have liked the old roller derby competitions?
Thanks for joining in. I saw The Lost Boys but doubt if I’d enjoy now.
I’m not a fan of bloody/gory movies at all, but I guess as a kid I was a little more open to it…
Gee, where’s Harding when we need him. The DST cluster is something that totally cheeses me off. Twice a year. What a stupid idea to think you can trick time.
As for skates, I broke an elbow doing a spin to impress some kids. While I loved going to the skating pavilion on Saturday afternoons, after the broken bone, I hung up the skates and moved on to breaking bones in other ways. Sigh.
Harding made federal employees go on summer hours rather than fudge up everyone’s clocks, and I don’t know why we didn’t keep doing that rather than the stupid time changes. Then again, DST must have some powerful lobbyists out there…
I was lucky enough to never break a bone (that required medical attention anyway), but I didn’t get too adventurous with my skating or biking…
I never learned how to stop while skating either. I was too busy trying to stay upright to learn any skills.
We need a Warren Hardy now! I’d love to see stupid DST banned before they make it permanently DST here. As much as I hate the time change, 9:00 sunrises in the winter are going to suck so unbelievably bad.
And then after year round DST, people would be pushing for double-DST (two hours ahead), which I found out some countries already do! What’s the point of having time zones if the governments all want to be in the time zone one or two hours ahead all of the time!?
You got some cool gifts. I thought when I got my first radio that ran on batteries (I was 12) was really cool because no one else had one. You got me beat!
Sounds like you got the cool gifts of the time! Most kids today would find my gifts to be lame because I didn’t get the latest iPhone or that hoverboard….
Now I’m feeling an irresistible urge to watch The Lost Boys again…
Zeeba wants to watch with you…
LOVE your history bits!
I enjoy digging them up every week. And I plan on keeping the series going a full seven years so I cover every date on the calendar (with a little cheating in 2028)…
You go, girl!
I had the first little handheld portable radio. I suppose for 1959, that was huge. I not sure IF there is a huge anymore. There’s more and more and even more, but none of it has the effect smaller things had on us because there’s so MUCH out there.