Tag Archives: biak

Dog Yum-Yum

The islands of Ternate and Tidore had been the destination of European explorers seeking to circumvent the Ottoman Empire’s spice trade monopoly . Only one ship from Magellan’s fleet returned from their historic voyage around the world and the spices purchased on these islands paid off the cost of the trip and enriched the investors […]

Stranded No More

This coming May I’m getting my honorary membership to the Explorer’s Club. I’m not sure that my qualifications fit those of the other members; astronauts, Himalayan mountaineers, and deep-sea divers. The club was founded Admiral Robert Peary. My grandfather was his post-Arctic doctor in Westbrook, Maine, and his daughter, the Snowbird, was my grandmother’s good […]

GHOST OF THE STUMP by Peter Nolan Smith

In the early 90s diamonds were priced to the advantage of the dealers on 47th Street. 50% profit was normal for most stones and my boss Manny gave his sales staff commission based on 5% of the gross. In February of 1991 I had the luck to hook a middle-aged woman looking to buy a […]

SLICED BREAD by Peter Nolan Smith

Sliced bread was invented in 1923 by a Davenport, Iowa inventor and the phrase ‘the greatest thing since sliced bread’ entered American legend shortly thereafter. Sliced bread was banned for wartime consumption in 1943, proving even the greatest thing in the world isn’t above the law in the USA. The ban was quickly rescinded by […]

Halfway Around the World

The first recorded circumnavigation of the world was completed by Magellan’s fleet in 1522. The Portuguese explorer’s trip ended in a bloody beach battle in the Philippines. Of the five ships and 237 men only 18 survived this epic journey thank to the captaincy of Juan Sebastián Elcano. His name is forgotten by the masses, […]