|Fig.1: Long, drawn-out fight scene directed
by Peter Jackson.
Friday, December 20, 2013
Saturday, December 14, 2013
|Fig.1: The greatest thing about Peter the Great is that
Johnny Depp could easily play him in a bio-pic.
Saturday, December 7, 2013
Korea has enough tension today with two antagonistic states vying for land, ideologies, and latent craziness (you'd think the North would have that last one in the bag, but the South have their moments). But you actually haven't seen anything yet. If two's company and three's a crowd, people in Korea must have felt pretty claustrophobic for the first seven centuries following the baking of the first doughnut (Anno Doughnutty, or AD for the lazy people out there). The Korean peninsula played host to three different kingdoms during this time, an era that those clever historians dubbed the Three Kingdoms Period. For nearly 700 years, the states of Goguryeo, Baekje, and Silla scratched and clawed the living heck out of each other until a victor finally emerged. It was the sort of spectacle that almost makes you glad of Korea's present division, communism and all.
Even more scary is the fact that they had to whittle it down to just three separate kingdoms. The Gojoseon kingdom, which had supposedly ruled Korea for two millennia under the descendants of a bear-woman, fell apart after a Chinese invasion in 108 BC. Many local rulers then took control, and Korea was cut-up into more unfulfilling slices than an office birthday cake. The super-aggressive rulers of Goguryeo took care of their neighbors in the north, and even snatched up some land from the Han Dynasty in China as they were started to get old and fall apart in the 2nd and 3rd centuries (respect your elders, my butt). Baekje formed as a confederation of tribes near the Han River valley in southwestern Korea. They just wanted to share their resources at the local co-op, living together while holding hands and singing in harmony forever and ever. Freaking hippies. Then there was Silla, who was quite content with their corner of the peninsula, and just wanted to be left to themselves. They demonstrated this by keeping their door closed to any diplomatic relations, and shouting at the other Korean states, "Just leave me alone! I hate you!" There was actually a fourth state in the south, Gaya, but they were relatively insignificant and had their finger in their nose the whole time. And so by the 4th century, the stage was set for the Battle of the Three Kingdoms (fig.1), and each one hoped the odds were ever in their favor.
|Fig.1: Official Vegas Odds