Sunday, July 17, 2005

how discovering stuff is simple

i took a ferry ride today with my nephew and family around new york city. i've grown up here, and i'm down with most of the local trivia and mafia tidbits. anyway, the performers on the boat offered this little bit i didn't know: the hudson river was discovered by giovanni verrazano, who also discovered staten island.

okay, first off: how do you discover a river? henry hudson was the first to navigate the whole river, therefore discovering that it was a river. i'm thinking that until then, it was just water. i mean, am i wrong about that? until hudson sailed the damn thing, verrazano must have just merely got his feet wet and said, "uh...yeah, so, my feet are wet, so i must've discovered a river or sumthin'" and then hudson proved it. is that what it takes? blind conjecture?

and then he discovered staten island? you can see staten island from downtown manhattan. you don't even need binoculars or a high vantage point. you can see it easily. did others not see it because it was foggy? did nobody even think of looking south? how can you discover an island that's in plain sight of everyone?

seriously, how much balls do you need to explain both of those as your "discoveries"?

can that be any more dubious?

my father's terrible joke that i've heard since childbirth is that when henry hudson navigated the hudson river, he pointed towards staten island and said, "is that an island?" and therefore, it was named.

maybe it was verrazano, or should we say, prince obvious.

i discovered a stream of water that leaked from the bathroom sink today. i claim it as a river. so now i believe a bridge should be named after me.

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