Touching Base

I still say the best definition of him I’ve ever read is demagogue

a political leader who seeks support by appealing to popular desires and prejudices rather than by using rational argument.

Seriously, has the man made a single rational argument for any issue/policy/idea whatsoever? I grant you he’s anti-establishment. I grant you Clinton was pro-establishment. I even grant you Johnson and Stein were snowballs in Hell. But good grief…

Other than that a fine trip to Wisconsin!

Brother & me with Dad (guess who voted for who)

Happy Wife at MKE, prior to departure, needily looking for the lounge, as we are wont to do

With the niece who knows me only as Urod

Note the crazy man behind us, Andy the fiancée, as if he were merely a face in the Houdini poster. Speaking of whom

Erik Weisz was born in Budapest to a Jewish family. His parents were Rabbi Mayer Sámuel Weisz (1829–1892) and Cecília Steiner (1841–1913). Houdini was one of seven children: Herman M. (1863–1885) who was Houdini’s half-brother, by Rabbi Weisz’s first marriage; Nathan J. (1870–1927); Gottfried William (1872–1925); Theodore (1876–1945); Leopold D. (1879–1962); and Carrie Gladys (1882–1959), who was left almost blind after a childhood accident.

Weisz arrived in the United States on July 3, 1878, on the SS Fresia with his mother (who was pregnant) and his four brothers. The family changed their name to the German spelling Weiss, and Erik became Ehrich. The family lived in Appleton, Wisconsin, where his father served as Rabbi of the Zion Reform Jewish Congregation.

According to the 1880 census, the family lived on Appleton Street. On June 6, 1882, Rabbi Weiss became an American citizen. Losing his tenure at Zion in 1887, Rabbi Weiss moved with Ehrich to New York City, where they lived in a boarding house on East 79th Street. He was joined by the rest of the family once Rabbi Weiss found permanent housing. As a child, Ehrich Weiss took several jobs, making his public début as a 9-year-old trapeze artist, calling himself “Ehrich, the Prince of the Air”. He was also a champion cross country runner in his youth. When Weiss became a professional magician he began calling himself “Harry Houdini”, after the French magician Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin, after reading Robert-Houdin’s autobiography in 1890. Weiss incorrectly believed that an i at the end of a name meant “like” in French. In later life, Houdini claimed that the first part of his new name, Harry, was an homage to Harry Kellar, whom he also admired.

Damn immigrants.

One thought on “Touching Base

Comments are closed.