May 04, 2006

The Bunk Files, Entry #1: History

Q: What happened?
A: Well, first of all, A. Then, B.

Q: Did A cause B?
A: Sorta depends on how you look at it.

Q: Why did A cause B?
A: Because people suck.

***

Memorize these three Q/A templates and you'll have mastered all of the intellectual skills necessary for a dazzling career in historical scholarship. Everything else is just a matter of sifting through people's dumpsters, underwear drawers, semi-literate newspapers and private correspondence, looking for factoids that were too unspeakably dull or terrifying for anyone to take any notice of during the times at which the relevant events were actually taking place. Or, alternatively, reading books written by other people who've done this dreary legwork for you, and mastering the art of trivial paraphrase.

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