Presence of Mind

While in Starkvegas doing errands last Friday morning, I had the presence of mind to know that I’d probably want something different to do on the day after Game Day. And so I stopped in at Palmer Home Thrift Store to look at crappy old books

Sure enough– I was right! I did want something different to do today– the day of doing absolutely nothing after days & days & days & days of preparing for Game Day

I picked up five dollars’ worth of crappy old books and made an obligatory and involuntary 35₵  contribution to the coffers of the Sovereign State of Mississippi. I have to say, although they are all valuable to me, I think the newest of the crappy old books is the most valuable. 

Quick reviews starting with the oldest… .

1906. A First Course in Physics by Robert Andrews Millikan, Ph.D., and Henry Gordon Gale, Ph. D., published by Ginn & Company of Boston, New York, Chicago, and London.

… a simple and immediate presentation, in language which the student already understands, of the hows and whys of the physical world in which we live

[emphasis in original]

 intended for high school kids. For purposes of this post, I will set aside  discussions of “how” and “why” talk and just comment that “language which the student already understands” would be a highly optimistic assumption 106 years after the book was published. 

Whenever any measurement has been reduced to its equivalent in terms of units of length, mass, and times, it is said to be expressed in absolute units. Furthermore, since in all scientific work the centimeter, the gram, and the second are now universally recognized as the fundamental units of length, mass and time, reducing a measurement to absolute units consists simply in reducing all lengths involved to centimeters, ass masses to grams, and all time to seconds, The measurement is then often said, for short, to be expressed in C.G.S. (Centimeter-Gram-Second) units. 

[emphasis in original]

I struggled with this a bit on Thursday night. (See “math update” and “9:06 update” here.) 

1938. Soils & Men: Yearbook of Agriculture 1938. United States Department of Agriculture. 1231 pages. 

BIG Government circa 1938.

1950. The Pasture Book.

Click to enlarge

 State College, Mississippi. 

A lot of the books at the Palmer House are discarded library books or donations of a person’s private library– likely after the person has died. This one once belonged to “W.R. Valentine, State College, Miss.” 

1951. Feeds and Feeding: A Handbook for the Student and Stockman by Frank B. Morrison assisted by Elsie B. Morrison, Spencer H. Morrison, Roger B. Morrison, and Harriet E. Morrison. Published by the Morrison Publishing Company in Ithaca, New York.

A 1207 page family project. Mine is the twenty-first, 50th anniversary, edition. A cursory look suggests it has some valuable information.

1987. American Voices: Prize-winning Essays on Freedom of Speech, Censorship and Advertising Bans published by Philip Morris USA and discarded by Lowndes County Library System. 

I spent the afternoon of my do-nothing day skimming through this 25 year old book that I picked up for a buck + 7 cents and is selling on some sites for 50+ bucks. 

No such thing as a free book. Look for the review soon.

8 Responses

  1. Feeds and Feeding is on my bookshelf as well…left over from college courses. Not exactly reading material, but a very good resource book if you have livestock.

    1. I posted a reply that is lost in cyber space. Can’t find it easily right now but check out the table on annual cost of having a dairy cow. Fascinating stuff.

  2. Just checked…

    mine is a twenty-second edition, copyright 1951, printed in 1959.

    Probably not much difference from yours…

  3. I didn’t find a table with the annual cost – but did find a list of expected feed requirements. Finding cost would be difficult from their list, because so much is apparently expected to be home grown. The cost of feeding one cow was $207.04 (.04??? that’s pretty precise!), with included about one half ton of purchased concentrates, 2 1/2 tons of hay and 5.3 tons of silage and pasture. I don’t know the replacement equivalents of the silage and pasture – but the last hay I bought was $250 per ton – making the cost of the hay alone $625. Of course, that’s alfalfa hay and in California. Their figures were apparently taken from New York and New Jersey.

    I’d bet that current numbers are _very_ different! My cost of hay has doubled in the last 4 years, and almost tripled in the last 20 years. My hay person tells me that it’s due to the Chinese buying up all the hay at the auctions. They ship so much stuff to us, and don’t want to go home empty. That’s what they say. Also the arabs – usually referred to as the “Saudis” – are in the mix as well. I don’t know about that – all I know is that the price of hay is going no where but up.

    Personally, I prefer goats – they only have two spigots. Although the guys have bought a Charolais cow with a 3 month old calf…they milk her daily, take about a gallon and the calf gets the rest. Not a bad plan, actually. Who needs more than a gallon a day!! I think they’re making cheese with it – at least, that’s what they say.

  4. Heh. Just keep reading…!

    Next paragraph has some feed costs in order to determine cost of milk per gallon – they figure hay at $20 per ton!


  5. And then…thinking about it…I recalled that in the early ’60s I could buy chicken on sale at .19 per pound (regularly priced at .25 to .29 per pound).

    That sort of sounds like inflation of about 10x, doesn’t it! What would that be…1000%

    Some of those old recipes I have were cut out of newspapers – I find it interesting to turn them over to see if there are food ads on the back – and if there’s some of date indicator somewhere.

    Sometimes I find it there…!

  6. Chicken wings…I have no idea. However the price of wings in California at this time is ridiculous! They cost as much as chicken breasts! (the bone in/skin on type). I used to buy packages of backs, necks and wings for diddly squat to make soup – no more! First, there don’t seem to be packages of backs and necks – much less wings! – available, Secondly, the price of wings would make that silly – which is no doubt why they don’t sell those packages any more. I do wonder what they do with the backs and necks!

    By the way – visiting my daughter in OK, wings were cheap. Which they _should_ be! But California…!! Buffalo Wings are a big deal out here. Stupid, imo.

    My husband likes wings. They are automatically his whenever we have a whole chicken.

    No accounting for taste.

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