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An interesting quote of faith

I am reading Gutierre Dias De Gamez's Chronicle of the Deeds of Don Pero Nino (15th century Spain).  I ran across a definition of faith that I think I like.  I say think mostly because it made me do exactly that.

"What is faith? Faith is steadfastness, a firm and certain belief in something that has not been seen, an argument of the spirit, and a discourse of the intelligence that makes the essential known from its accidents."
                                                                                                                     Gutierre Dias De Gamez's Chronicle of the Deeds of Don Pero Nino

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Podiatrist appointment made

I have a podiatrist appointment Friday.  Here's to hoping whatever needs to be done does not impact WMAW.  Wait let me re-phrase that; "nothing will impact WMAW".  If it looks like it might I'd rather deal with pain and do stuff then be compfortable on the sidelines.
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Great LJ Geek Brain Trust

For the life of me I cannot figure out how to extract zip files to a specified dir on Windows XP using the command line.  I'm working on a script that will make installs easier on me and this is the last stumbling block I have.  I've probably been staring at this too long and can't see the forest for the trees.  Can anyone offer solutions?  Other then use a real operating system.  Which my employer is unlikely to do.

Edit.  I should further stated that I am not allowed to download plugins or third party software. Otherwise I'd be using 7 Zip or Cygwin. Darn corporate policies.
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A moment of reflection if you would...

I herd this morrning from several sources that Darrell "Shifty" Powers died on June 17th, 2009.  Mr Powers is one of the great heros of WWII.  He served with E Co 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airbourne Division.  This is the "Band of Brothers" imortalised by the book and HBO mini series of the same name.

He died in among all of the "celebrity" deaths that happend in late June and early July.  But the mainstream media has not "picked up the story" until the last few days.  In fact I only herd about it this morning.  This shit REALLY pisses me off.  It is sad that others in the public eye have died.  Heck it's sad that anyone dies but here is a great man from what some have called the "Greatest Generation" who should have been given his due among them.

Below is an article that appeared a few days after his death.  I leave you with that rather then my anger at the lack of reporting by the so called news media.

Veteran a part of 'Band of Brothers'

Darrell "Shifty" Powers, who died at age 86, was a hero on the battlefield and to his family.

By Neil Harvey

In a 2001 interview with The Roanoke Times, Darrell "Shifty" Powers talked about some of his experiences during World War II.

Powers, a United States Army paratrooper and sharpshooter, belonged to Easy Company, part of the legendary 101st Airborne Division. He recalled a bitterly cold day in the Ardennes when he was able to draw down on a German sniper, sighting his target by the misty cloud of the man's breath. He killed him with one shot.

"Right there," he said, touching his forehead. "Between the eyes."

But Powers, of Dickenson County, who died Wednesday of natural causes at age 86, was also reflective about such matters.

In the second-to-last episode of "Band of Brothers," an HBO miniseries that documented Easy Company's wartime exploits, Powers spoke on camera about the soldiers he fought and also hinted at the intrinsic tragedy of combat.

"We might have had a lot in common. He might've liked to fish, you know, he might've liked to hunt," Powers said. "Of course, they were doing what they were supposed to do, and I was doing what I was supposed to do.

"But under different circumstances, we might have been good friends."

Powers, who got the nickname "Shifty" playing basketball as a youngster, served three years in the Army during World War II and later worked as a machinist for Clinchfield Coal Corp. He found renewed notoriety when his military experiences were depicted on film and in the Stephen Ambrose book of the same name.

"He actually hadn't talked about it, his war years, until the book came out," said his daughter-in-law, Sandy Powers. "He gets fan mail from all over the world, and calls."

"For me and my kids, it's just amazing that our regular, sweet uncle was such a hero," said his niece, Cheryl Gilliland of Roanoke. "It sure changed his life in later years. He went places and met people he never would have otherwise."

Darrell Powers met a German soldier in 2005 who had fought against him at the notoriously brutal siege of Bastogne during the winter of 1944.

According to his son, Wayne, he had in September been scheduled to travel to Iraq to meet with U.S. soldiers, but health problems prevented it.

"He was so disappointed. He wanted to meet with the soldiers so badly," Sandy Powers said.

One of his closest friends, Earl McClung, of Colorado, in 2001 called Darrell Powers "a heck of a good soldier and a heck of a good shot."

"And he was there every time I looked up," he added.

"Our family had four boys and one girl, and I'm the only one left," said Powers' sister, Gaynell Sykes of Roanoke, on Wednesday. "He was a great brother. I know he was great at a lot of other things, too -- great father, great son, great husband."

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Trueblood and sleep

I may have to stop watching True Blood when it airs and DVR it. Slept like crap last night and had weird dreams that seem to have had something to do with the show. 

At least when I read fighting manuals before bed (and sleep like crap) I usually have some insight into them. Or is that a hallucination.

*shouts*  Medic, medic I need morphine, err I mean caffeine.
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Concerning Talhoffer

I run into folks on a regular basis who are working on HEMA (Historic European Marital Arts) who are just (or primarily) working with the works of Hans Talhoffer.  Mostly because his manuscripts are illustrated (some of the first from Germany) and because Mark Rector's interpretation of the 1467 edition is so widely available.  Mark's book is great and I use it for intro stuff all the time but it is not a beginers book.  I am starting to write War and Peace as happens when I start talking about Talhoffer. 

This morning I was checking the Sword Forum Boards and another discussion on Talhoffer has started.  I read it because the question was specific and I thought I might be able to weigh in.  Turns out what I was going to say was covered by others.  But there was "the Hope Diamond" of explanations of Talhoffer by Stefan Dieke.

"... Talhoffer has some drawbacks. Once you have a profound understanding of Liechtenauer's system, Talhoffer becomes pretty accessible. Without this background chances are extremely high that you come up with 'creative' interpretations which most likely are not what Talhoffer meant."
Stefan Dieke

At this point there are plenty of places you can go to get a more "profound understanding of Liechtenauer's system".  These sources can be found online, in print and on DVD.  Below are just a few of the better ones available in English.

Translations in Print:
Secrets of German Medieval Swordsmanship: Sigmund Ringeck's Commentaries on Liechtenauer
Christian Tobler

The Art of Combat: A German Martial Arts Treatise of 1570
by Joachim Meyer Joachim Meyer (Author), Jeffrey L. Forgeng (Translator)

Translations Online:
"Goliath" (1510 - 1520)
"Hanko Döbringer" (ca 1389) See the PDF about halfway down the page.

Interpreations in Print:
Fighting with the German Longsword
Christian Tobler

The Longsword of Johannes Liechtenauer (vendor is one of several selling this in the USA)
By Alex Kiermeyer and Hans Heim of the Och fight school in Germany
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I'll be in my bunk

Tom Leoni just announced on Sword Forum that his translation of Getty Fiore will be out later this month.  I'll be one of the first to be ordering mine.  I'm also eagerly awaiting the second eddition that "will be complete with illustrations and collateral material such as the lives of the condottieri mentioned by Fiore, more expanded historical and linguistic notes, plus synoptic tables of the system."  I had a joygasim when I read the bit about the condottieri.  Like I said I'll be in my bunk.
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From Stephen Colbert's twitter

"in hindsight, i really should’ve tried to get on the iranian ballot".  I love that man. 

I still need to finish watching the shows he did in Iraq.  I did see the first one where President Obama told General Odierno.  That was too funny.

Red Faction

Red Faction: Guerrilla

I upped my geekdom last night and bought my first game the day it came out.  I got Red Faction: Guerrilla for the Xbox.  I will say more in a minute but let me start out by saying: THIS GAME ROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKS!!!

It's the classic story of a Blue Collar Martian miner rises up against the evil occupying Earth forces.  If it sounds like a lame storyline the game play MORE then makes up for it.  The object to to driver the Earthers off Mars.  To do this you need to destroy their infrastructure.  You can do that with the usual tools like exlosives and guns but you also have a supped up sledge hammer.  Go check out the videos on the site to see what I mean.

This game has replaced Battlefront and Left 4 Dead as my "I've had a bad day and need to violently kill pixels".  Why just shoot Ewoks or Zombies when you can destroy buildings, vehicles and people with a sledge hammer.  :-)
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Sword Stand

WMAW registration open

Registration is open for WMAW.  When I got the email I did SQUEEEE big time.  Then I had to calm down and fill out the forms.  Which I did.  I might have to set up a ticker for my LJ profile.  :-)

As always the class list is a nightmare to figure out what to take.  I decided to do the following.

Combat Biomechanics: The Art of Tactical Movement  Tony Wolf
Ott's Ringen  Jessica Finley
Combat Manuals in Context  Keith Alderson
Fighting from the Nebenhut: Longsword Plays from the Ringeck Fechtbuch  Christian Tobler
Meyer's Halbe Stange - a devastating length of wood  Stefan Dieke
The German Fightbook: Working with 3227a, Sigmund Ringeck, Peter von Danzig, and progressing to Joachim Meyer  Keith Alderson
New Old Spain — Lost and Found, Found Again, or Lost in Plain Sight  Steve Hick
A German Spearman's Primer  Christian Tobler
A Conceptual look at the 24 Winden of Johannes Liechtenauers Art  Jörg Bellinghausen
An Introduction to the Dagger of Joachim Meyer  Jörg Bellinghausen
Bartitsu: The Gentlemanly Art of Self Defence  Tony Wolf
Mixed Weapon Techniques: Use of the Iberian Montante (Two-Handed Sword) Against Polearms  Eric Myers

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