Vicksburg – well, first, Grant more broadly – (and an amusing time-traveling sidetrack to Gettysburg)

unconditional surrender grant clipped

Grant at Ft. Donelson

So I really want to concentrate on Vicksburg but because Vicksburg was really about long, difficult, and seemingly endless preparation and because in that situation the purely personal relationships are key – and because Steve Knott’s Army War College lecture is so good – I’m going to put it up first so that at least I will have it close by to liven up my swamp digging siege stuff.

Let Steve Knot tell you why Confederate Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart ended up in Carlisle while the rest of the Confederates were converging on Gettysburg. Then we’ll head back to the long slog at Vicksburg.

Actually, you know what, before the terrain heavy, tactical, and brilliant siege Grant laid to Vicksburg, I think, because this is my own damn blog and I can put up any damn thing I want, it is my pleasure to just roll around in the amazingness of Grant in general and this, in my humble opinion, is one of the best takes on him that exists.

The Generalship of Ulysses S. Grant and the American Civil War

by

Dr. Richard J. Sommers

at the

U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center

From the YouTube description:

Ulysses S. Grant was neither a magnetic leader of Soldiers (such as George McClellan or George Patton) nor a military genius (in the mold of Robert E. Lee or Douglas MacArthur). Yet his qualities of command mark him as the best general in the Federal Army and one of the most successful generals in all of American history. Most significantly, he understood how to convert advantages into achievements. Our February program analyzes the generalship of Ulysses S. Grant, identifies his many strengths as a military commander, and yet also acknowledges limitations in his leadership. The presentation proceeds to place his generalship in the overall context of the American Civil War.

 

 

 

Poker (BOO!)

BOO!

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While I expound on Chess as a analogy for everything it is not at all the analogy in my head. My go-to analogy is always, always, Poker. Poker before it got cool. Poker before TV.

Not just one game over and over and over.

A game that changes with each new pot. Spit in the Ocean. Mexican Sweat. Five Card Stud. Seven Card Stud. Sometimes even Five Card Draw, but not as often. And of course, sometimes, Hold ‘Em. But it should be realized at the outset that Hold ‘Em takes the traditional variables that remove Poker from the traditional realm of the statistically predictable games and makes Poker something odds can once again be placed on, and therefore more easily bet on like a horse race.

Because a statistician watching a game of Seven Card Stud  has as much chance at predicting the winner by using magic as he would using math. Texas Hold ‘Em does, indeed save some secrets in the hole cards, but in a shoe of one deck that is beautifully more illuminated than the solidity of statistical predictions on Blackjack.

And since it appears almost everyone alive dates their entire experience with poker to some time after “Rounders” you wouldn’t understand what an exceptional opening generalization poker really is.

BOO!

 

The Seacow Arrives

Seacow heaven

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Batmish made a Seacow and it is awesome so it must become some sort of character and do cool Seacow things. I’m also very certain that this Seacow has a brilliant sense of humor.

I mean, it’s obvious, right?

Creative Commons: Attribution – Batmish

Not all Seacows are Pink – in expectation of Batmish complaint