I have to offer my most sincere apologies to members of the UNRV site who put in so much time and effort to keep the community alive and vibrant, and of course to Viggen/Christian who does so much to really keep up with the promotional efforts. Most of you know him as the guy who wields the vitis around here anyway.
As much as I love this site (which I hope can be evidenced by all the work that was put into it over the years), its obvious that I've been largely absent for a considerable time in any meaningful and recognizable fashion. The site marches on without me for the most part of course, but my waning participation causes a certain deep personal anguish. With my career promotion a couple of years ago, the increasing responsibilities have taken on a life of their own, and it's all I can do to manage them while also keeping some semblance of family life in order for my wife and boys. I'm not complaining by any stretch, as there are definitely advantages, but its obviously made my presence on UNRV woefully inadequate.
I really just figured it would be a good idea to make some sort of statement as to my activity level here. World and human history remain a personal passion, and the UNRV absence does not equate to a lack of reading or ongoing self study - I wish I had the knack for book reviewing that some of you seem to have but its not something that comes together very easily (I actually find it terribly stressful). Alternatively, at some point I'd love to add to the narrative that I started so long ago (and it sure wouldn't hurt to give it a few solid edits), but I have to be honest with myself and accept my own limitations (both on time and perhaps more importantly the actual ability to write anything).
With that said, I'm resolving myself to start interacting more frequently with the site and the forum. I miss doing it and I miss the conversation in its many forms: from heated debate to simply providing a few reference links to the occasional passerby. It's neither a promise nor a threat , just a personal statement that I felt like making.
So what I'm saying is - sorry I haven't been around much, but I hope to remedy that shortly - and thanks so much for making this such a great destination for Romanophiles.
Much like the headline says, my back hurts. It's not a constant pain, but it's rather situational and stems from a problem with my sciatic nerve. If I sit for a long time, or lay in certain positions, I find it difficult to get up and/or walk straight. The pain isn't overwhelming but its certainly dysfunctional. My chiropracter/kinesiologist is helping to minimize the impact, but can't seem to relieve the problem altogether (yes that's a form of holistic care coupled with traditional chiropractic, I don't really care for the common forms of chemical laden/drug dependent medicine). This is something I experienced in my college years and was able to virtually eliminate the problem for over a decade, but it's back with a vengeance.
Anyway, my "quack" is developing the opinion that I may be one of those rare people who's nerve runs in a position between the gluteus muscles and the bones of the hip in such a way that it may just be an issue I have to deal with forever. We're still trying various techniques for relief, but he's afraid that the nerve is simply in a position that whenever my muscles flex in a certain way they push the nerve against the bone and cause the irritation. I'm learning to focus on relaxing the muscles in question whenever I get a flare up, but it's a rather hit or miss prospect and in the meantime, it's uncomfortable and distracting. The pain doesn't stop me from working out or participating in normal daily routines, so I'm not trying to complain too much, but it sure would be nice if it just didn't keep sending those shivers of pain down my leg.
The shivers aside, it wouldn't even be all that terrible, except that it often wakes me up at night. It won't keep me up for more than a few minutes, the pain is sudden and severe based on a shift of position or a movement of the muscles, but I still wake up several times a night.
This might explain a recent increase in alcohol intake.
One of the reasons I decided to revisit this little personal UNRV blog is because of a related project I am working on in the office... yes my real job... not my UNRV perch.
Despite working for a communications firm (broadcasting, public relations, etc., not phones and such) we are a bit behind the times when it comes to using the internet as a tool for certain clients. One of our major business categories is developing online video "news" broadcasts that companies use to communicate with employees across the country and the world so the net is clearly part of our business strategy, but we haven't really tapped into the blogging concept. In any case, as I am inexplicably considered to be an internet expert by my fellow workers (evidence of just how little these folks know about the net), I've been charged with developing a blogging strategy for the company.
With that said, here is my question for anyone who may be browsing through this less than exciting post...
I want to recommend a single blog for the entire company, with categories for each individual client/and or nature of business. The advantage here is ease of maintenance, development of a brand identity, a constant flow of content due to multiple activities with clients, a broader potential audience, etc.
My boss feels that having an individual blog for each of our clients will be more appealing to each of these actual clients. They will see their "name in lights" without distraction by other related or completely unrelated clients. I can see how making the client happy has an advantage in this regard, but other than that, I don't see a great advantage for OUR company to do it this way.
As you can see, I haven't exactly made great use of this blog thing. I posted a few coin entries... but I really don't have the heart for it.
From here on out, this will be more personal in nature. So without further adieu...
Item #1. We (my wife and I) are hosting a wine tasting party for a few couples this Saturday night. Our group is mostly inexperienced in wine save for myself, my wife and one other couple. We have already made the bulk of purchases for our tasting stock, but could always be influenced by new suggestions...
Our current sampling:
Principessa Gavi (IT)
San Giuseppe Pinot Grigio (IT)
Tormenta Viognier (CHILE)
Banfi Le Rime (Chardonnay & Pinot Grigio blend) (IT)
Domain Monthoux Beaujolais (FR)
Blackstone Sonoma Reserve Pinot Noir (USA)
Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot (USA)
Dynamite Vineyards Merlot (USA)
Ten Mile Petite Sirah blend (USA)
Cheap Skate Cab Sauv & Cab Franc Blend (USA)
Casa Catillo Jumilla (SP)
Venta Mazzaron Tempranillo (SP)
Nobili Palazzoli Primitivo (Italian original version of the Zin grape) (IT)
DiMajo Norante Sangiovese (IT)
Greg Norman Shiraz (AUS)
We're missing any sort of sweet wines such as a Reisling, but I know some guests will be bringing a few other samples. I'm just not sure of the specifics.
Julius Caesar. 48-46 BC. AR Denarius (3.81 gm).
This denarius was minted by Julius Caesar between 48 and 46 BC in a travelling military mint during the civil wars and is a clear example of political propoganda.
The obverse diademed head of Venus represents the Julian clan's divine lineage. The hero Aeneas was the son of Anchises and Venus. Aeneas
The famous coin believed to be that referenced in the testament of Jesus Christ (Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke)
"Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not? But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites? Shew me the tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny. And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? They say unto him, Caesar
This coin, the first entry in 'Moneta Romana' is a very recent purchase. While its value is moderate for a coin of this type, the image of victorious Sulla in triumph despite his own version of despotism, is a classic representation of the glory that was Rome.
Moneyer: L. Manlius Torquatus. He was Sulla's Proquaestor during the wars against Mithradates VI.
Mint Year: 82 BC
Type: Silver Denarius
Weight: 3.71 gm
Obverse Legend: L. MANLI, PRO.Q (for proquaestor).
Obverse Image: Roman helmeted facing right.
Reverse Legend: L SULLA IM (Lucius Sulla Imperator)
Interestingly, this is an early coin depicting a living Roman. It is Sulla in quadriga (4 horsed chariot) being crowned by Victory. Though unfortunately on my sample, both Victory and Sulla are not visible.
Julius Caesar is often credited/demonized for being the first living Roman to have his portrait featured on a coin. We can clearly see, however, that precedents were being set in which representations of living Romans were already showing up well before Caesar took that final fateful plunge. It is quite correct that Caesar was the first to feature an actual portrait though.
Considering that this site is dedicated to Roman history, I thought it prudent to maintain a blog that is more appropriately related. Hence, you may have noticed that my rather sparse previous entries on randomness have been eliminated. These will be replaced with a blog dedicated to Roman numismatics. This will not be an in depth review of coinage, but simply a place to reveal items within my personal collection. Unfortunately, that collection is not particularly large, so hopefully this blog will also inspire me to add to it.