Sunday, February 25, 2024

Historical Events That Never Happened pt 1of3

Over the years, we've learned many things about our nation's history, primarily in school. But how much of what we learned is actually true and how much is exaggeration, embellishment, or actual untruths that have come down through the years and changed along the way?

This is part 1 of a 3-part blog series showing those inaccuracies in our knowledge of the history of the United States.

1.  Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride

The tale of Paul Revere riding through the Massachusetts countryside warning American colonists that the British were coming has its origins from an 1860 poem (85 years after the actual event) by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. His poem wasn’t a historical piece on Paul Revere. It was actually a topical warning about America breaking apart shortly before the Civil War. According to historians, Wadsworth simplified the actual events of the night of April 18, 1775, in rhyming form.

In truth, Paul Revere didn’t receive the lantern signals—he sent them. He wasnt a solo rider, he started out with William Dawes and along the way met up with Samuel Prescott, another member of their group. It has been suggested (as a moment of humor) that he chose Paul Revere as the object of his poem because more words rhymed with Revere. Prescott was the only one to actually reach Concord. Revere was captured and Dawes managed to escape. And Revere didn’t ride around shouting that the British were coming. He went to the homes of members of their group to quietly warn them. If he had been shouting in the streets while riding through town, the many local residents who were British loyalists would have captured him and turned him over to the British troops.

2.  Rats Weren’t The Main Culprit Of The Black Death

Although it's a commonly accepted theory, recent studies have shown that rats, along with the mites and fleas they carried, may not have been the only thing to blame for the devastating plague that killed almost one-third of Europe’s population in the 14th century. At the University of Oslo, scientists conducted an experiment to determine  the potential sources for the pandemic.

They discovered the parasites carrying the disease more likely came from humans rather than rats. Their model demonstrates that the disease spread by human fleas and lice matched the death rates for the Black Death more so than their model regarding parasite-carrying rats.

3.  Christopher Columbus Discovered America

Most children in the United States are taught that “in 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue” crossing the Atlantic Ocean with his ships the NiƱa, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria with hopes of reaching Asia and proving a quicker ocean route to Japan and China than the long slow over land route. He, as most of the rest of the world's population, weren't aware of the huge land mass separating two huge oceans between Europe and Asia.

However, Columbus certainly wasn’t the first person to “discover” America. People had been sailing east across the Pacific Ocean for many years prior to Columbus' first voyage west across the Atlantic Ocean. People and animals had been crossing what was then the Bering land bridge before geologic time turned it into the Bering Straight. He wasn’t even the first European to land in the Western Hemisphere. He made several trips across the Atlantic but only made it to the Caribbean islands and never actually stepped foot on the North American continent. In fact, the Viking Leif Erikson is believed to have landed and established a settlement in North America (what is now Canada) almost 500 years before Columbus first attempt to sail west in search of an ocean route to Japan and China.

4.  Ben Franklin Discovered Electricity

The story of Ben Franklin attaching a key to a kite during a lightning storm and declaring that he had discovered electricity wasn’t exactly what it seems. Franklin didn’t discover electricity. Scientists were well aware of electricity before Franklin’s 1752 kite and key experiment.

What Franklin actually set out to do was prove that lightning was electricity. In fact, he may not have even flown the kite himself. In 1752, Franklin wrote in the Pennsylvania Gazette that he performed the experiment, but never specified that it was him flying the kite. There has been speculation that his son had flown the kite.

5.  Martin Luther Nailing His “95 Theses” To The Church Door

The iconic story of Martin Luther nailing his list of issues with the Catholic Church to the doors of a church is commonly regarded as the spark that fueled the flame for the Protestant Revolution and creating the Protestant branch of Christianity. While Luther’s 95 Theses were real, it didn’t exactly play out like that.

There is no historical evidence that proves Luther actually nailed his list to the doors of a church, a story that didn’t surface until nearly thirty years after the fact. However, what is known is that Luther mailed his “95 Theses” to the archbishop and never intended to start an issue with the church, considering he was a devoted Catholic.

6.  Nero “Fiddled” While Rome Burned

Although the first-century Roman emperor isn’t entirely innocent of the devastating fires that engulfed Rome, he certainly wasn’t doing anything about it. To Start, Nero wasn’t even in the city when the fires began. He was in Antium, approximately thirty miles outside of the city. Although he may have considered himself an artist, the expression that Nero was literally playing the fiddle while Rome burned is completely false.

There were no fiddles in Rome at the time, and he certainly wasn’t playing an instrument while watching the city burn. The phrase “fiddled” while Rome burned is an expression regarding a leader that does little during a time of crisis.

7.  Isaac Newton And The Apple

The tall tale of mathematician Isaac Newton coming up with the concept of gravity after an apple fell on his head is an exaggeration of what happened. The story of the apple didn’t come about until it was published in a biography of Newton written by his friend William Stukeley in 1752.

The text reads, “the notion of gravitation came into his mind…occasion’d by the fall of an apple, as he sat in a contemplative mood.” Historians believe that Newton may have seen an apple fall from a tree, but it’s unlikely that it fell on his head.

8.  Witch Burnings At The Salem Witch Trials

Although the Salem Witch trials are often synonymous with “witch burnings,” that isn’t the case. Not a single person accused of being a witch in 17th century Salem, Massachusetts, ever met their fate by burning at the stake.

Of the 20 accused Salem witches, 19 of them were hanged while the final one, the only man, was crushed by rocks. The idea that witches were to be burned most likely comes from a witch hysteria that took place in Europe between the 15th and 18th centuries. In England, suspected witches were hanged with that method also being used in the Colonies. In France, they were burned alive at the stake.

9.  “Let Them Eat Cake”

Although it makes a good story, the French queen Marie Antoinette remarking “let them eat cake,” regarding her impoverished subjects never happened. Accounts of royals suggesting that the poor eat delicacies they can’t afford dates long before Marie Antoinette’s rule.

The quote “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche” or “let them eat cake” first appeared in a 1767 autobiographical account by philosopher Jean-Jacques Rosseau. He attributes the quote to a “great princess,” when Antoinette was only just a young girl at the time, so it was most likely not her.

10.  Van Gogh Never Cut Off His Ear

Many people know Vincent Van Gogh as the tortured artist who cut off his ear and sent it to his lover. While this is partially true, what happened is that he only severed the bottom part of his ear lobe. He suffered from severe depression at the time.

Some historians believe that cutting off part of his ear was the result of a dispute with fellow artist Paul Gaugin or his brother’s engagement. No matter what pushed him to do it, he certainly didn’t cut off his entire ear. Yet another theory says his ear was cut off by someone else during a fight.

11.  Lady Godiva’s Naked Ride

The story goes that Lady Godiva, the wife of Leofric, the lord of Coventry, England, had sympathy for her husband’s subjects that were being ruthlessly taxed. So, Leofric proclaimed that he would lower taxes if his wife rode naked through the town.

However, the real story is based on a real woman named Godifu, who was the wife of Leofric, who led an unremarkable life other than being married to an important man. It’s believed the legend came about as a way to explain the generous historical acts on the part of Leofric.

12.  Romulus Founding Rome

When it comes to the naming of Rome, most people would assume this came from a man named Romulus along with his twin brother Remus. Legend says both Romulus and Remus were raised by a wolf that nursed them as babies and that their father was the god, Mars.

Nevertheless, regarding the existence of Romulus and Remus, historian Theodore Mommsen told The New York Times that the legend was “out of the question.” It simply was impossible that either of these two boys existed during the time, and they definitely weren’t raised by wolves.

13.  Beware The Ides Of March

William Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar gives a decent example of what the final moments in Caesar’s life might have been, and there were a lot of dramatics involved.

For instance, some of the most classic lines associated with Caesar were never actually spoken such as Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears,” “let slip the dogs of war,” and of course, “Et Tu, Brute?” Yet, it’s unlikely that any such words were muttered during the chaos that was his assassination.

Next week, check back here for part 2 of my 3-part blog series of Historical Events That Never Happened. 

Sunday, February 18, 2024

History of President's Day Holiday

President's Day is a legal federal holiday in the U.S. originally established in 1885 in recognition of President George Washington. It's currently celebrated on the third Monday in February. In 2024, that's February 19th. The federal government still officially calls it Washington's Birthday. When first established, it was celebrated on February 22—Washington's actual date of birth.

The story of President's Day begins in 1800. Following President George Washington's death in 1799, his February 22 birthday became a perennial day of remembrance. At the time, Washington was venerated as the most important figure in American history, and events like the 1832 centennial of his birth and the start of construction of the Washington Monument in 1848 were cause for national celebration.

While Washington's Birthday was an unofficial observance for most of the 1800s, it was not until late 1879 that it became a federal holiday when President Rutherford B. Hayes signed it into law. The holiday initially only applied to the District of Columbia, but in 1885 it was expanded to the whole country.

The shift from Washington's Birthday to President's Day began in the late 1960s when Congress proposed a measure known as the Uniform Monday Holiday Act. This law shifted the celebration of several federal holidays from specific dates to a series of predetermined Mondays creating three-day holiday weekends. While some argued that shifting holidays from their original dates would cheapen their meaning, the bill had widespread support. The Uniform Monday Holiday Act also included a provision to combine the celebration of Washington's Birthday with Abraham Lincoln's, which fell on February 12, thus giving equal recognition to two of America’s most famous presidents.

The main piece of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act passed in 1968 and officially took effect in 1971 following an executive order from President Richard Nixon. Washington's Birthday was then shifted from the fixed date of February 22 to the third Monday of February.

Washington and Lincoln still remain the two most recognized leaders, but President's Day is now popularly seen as a day to recognize the lives and achievements of America's chief executives. For its part, the federal government has held fast to the original incarnation of the holiday as a celebration of the country's first president. The third Monday in February is still listed on official calendars as Washington's Birthday. [I just took a look at my office calendar and it shows February 19, 2024, the third Monday in February, as President's Day rather than Washington's birthday.] 

Sunday, February 11, 2024

The History of Mardi Gras and the Tradition Of Flashing

This year Mardi Gras falls on Tuesday, February 13, 2024. In the Catholic Church, it's Shrove Tuesday, also known as Fat Tuesday. The date for Mardi Gras depends on the date of Easter—always occurring forty-six days before Easter.

In the most literal sense, the Mardi Gras celebration is the three days prior to the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. It's the last opportunity for partying and indulgence in food and drink. In practice, Mardi Gras—or Carnival, as it is called in many countries—is usually celebrated for a full week before the start of Lent.

Celebrations take place all over the world with the most famous modern day festivities being in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Nice, France; and Cologne, Germany.

Even though Mardi Gras is a Christian festival, it dates back to the pre-Christian spring fertility rites and embodies many of the traditions of the ancient Greeks and Romans. In the early Middle Ages, after converting pagan tribes to Christianity, the Catholic Church was still unable to abolish all the ancient traditions. To combat this, the Church ended up taking many ancient feasts and festivals originally celebrated in honor of pagan gods and adapted them to Christian beliefs. An example of the pagan roots—today revelers on parade floats still dress as Bacchus, the Greek god of wine.

The first Mardi Gras celebration in the United States was near modern day New Orleans on March 3, 1699, but it was the mid 1800s before parade organizations, known as krewes, came into being. The first Mardi Gras parade was held in New Orleans on February 24, 1854, by the Krewe of Comus. They began the tradition of a parade with floats followed by a ball for the krewe and their guests. The official colors of Mardi Gras were chosen by Rex, King of Carnival, in 1892 and given their meaning—purple for justice, green for faith, and gold for power.

But what about that popular activity that has become a seemingly integral part of the New Orleans Mardi Gras, much to the chagrin of the festival purists? Women pulling up their shirts and flashing their bare breasts to procure some worthless plastic beads?

Exactly where did this tradition come from?

Well, first of all, it's not really a tradition. It's more along the lines of what has become a traditional activity in the same vein as getting stupid drunk and passing out now seems to fall into that same 'traditional' Mardi Gras category. Over the years, more and more media attention has been directed toward the drunken revelry that occurs on Bourbon Street which has helped in defining flashing as a traditional part of the Mardi Gras celebration.

Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on your point-of-view, flashing in exchange for beads is mostly limited to the New Orleans' French Quarter. And even in the French Quarter, it's an illegal activity. Women flashing their bare breasts run the risk of being arrested.

Maybe flashing is not a true tradition, but you can't deny that it has become a custom. After all, the history of wild Mardi Gras behavior comes from celebrating the last day before Lent—Lent being a time of atonement. And this naturally lends itself to activities of excess and craziness.

Which apparently has come to include flashing.

But there is one crazy excess even more daring than the momentary baring of the female breasts known as flashing. And what, you may ask, could possibly be crazier than flashing and still be done in public? And the answer is having clothes painted on your bare skin. There are artists who specialize in this. It probably started as something simple and basic like face painting but has grown to include full body artistic renderings. At a casual glance, it appears that the person is clothed (albeit skin tight clothing). But on closer inspection, you discover that's far from the truth. Some of these examples shown below are basic and others are quite elaborate.

Sunday, February 4, 2024

The St. Valentine's Day Massacre—the most spectacular gangland slaying in mob history.

While Valentine's Day is a holiday associated with love, there is one historical event forever connected to Valentine's Day that had nothing to do with love, flowers, cards, and chocolate.

Al Capone (known to be the mastermind, but never charged for the crime) had arranged for his chief rival, Chicago mobster George 'Bugs' Moran and most of his North Side Gang, to be eliminated on February 14, 1929.  The plan was simple and deviously clever, yet Capone's primary target escaped any injury.  Capone distanced himself from the execution of the plan (and the execution of his rivals) by spending the time at his home in Florida thus providing himself with a solid alibi.

A bootlegger loyal to Capone was to draw Moran and his gang to a warehouse to receive a shipment of smuggled whiskey, the delivery set for 10:30AM on Valentine's Day.

The morning of February 14 was cold and snowy.  A group of Moran's men waited for Bugs at the red brick warehouse at 2122 North Clark Street.  Moran was running late.  When his car turned the corner onto Clark Street, he spotted a police wagon pulling up to the warehouse.  Assuming it was a raid, he watched as five men, three of them dressed in police uniforms, entered the building.  Moran and the two men with him, immediately left the area.

Inside the warehouse, the hit men, disguised as police, confronted Moran's men.  Assuming it was a routine bust, they followed instructions when ordered to line up against the wall.  The hit men opened fire with Thompson submachine guns, killing six of the seven men immediately.  The seventh man, with twenty-two bullet wounds, survived the attack but died after arriving at the hospital.

The newspapers instantly picked up on the crime, dubbing it the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.  The story appeared on front pages around the country, making Capone a national celebrity.  But to his dismay, this new found notoriety also brought a new level of attention from federal law enforcement culminating in his conviction for tax evasion and his incarceration at Alcatraz.  With all the law enforcement agencies trying to bring down Capone, it was a tax accountant working for the Internal Revenue Service who finally did it.

There have been several movies and television shows utilizing The St. Valentine's Day Massacre as an integral part of the storyline. My personal choice is also one of my all-time favorite movies, SOME LIKE IT HOT, a comedy built around subsequent events following the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, starring Tony Curtis, Jack Lemon, and Marilyn Monroe.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Dangerous Wallpaper

The desire to decorate our walls dates back to the caveman days when our ancient ancestors marked their cave walls with dots, lines, zigzags, and cross-hatching. Fast forward tens of thousands of years and we have modern day wallpaper providing that decoration.

Some of the earliest known examples of wallpaper are thought to date back more than 2,000 years to China's Qin dynasty. Images of landscapes, flowers, and birds were painted on rice paper. By the 12th century, this craft was believed to have traveled to the West via the Silk Road. By the end of the 18th century, mechanization created a change in the industry.

So, you ask, what is it about wallpaper that could possibly be considered dangerous? The mystery is in the way it was being made at that time. There are hundreds of samples of wallpaper from that era located in The National Archives in London that were scientifically proven to contain arsenic, an innocuous looking white powder known even at that time to be poisonous. The arsenic also produced vibrant color that, after centuries, has shown very little color deterioration. People working with the wallpaper samples in The National Archives put on gloves before handling the poisonous paper.

For paint and dye manufacturers, arsenic was a cheap product that increased the brilliance and durability of pigments, especially when applied to wallpaper. The public loved the bright colors of the wallpaper. Even when they learned that the dyes contained arsenic, they still did not consider it dangerous (assuming no one licked the wallpaper or their fingers after touching it). What the public didn't realize was that damp conditions caused the arsenic to release a lethal gas. In spite of mounting evidence and increasing public awareness, wallpaper manufacturers were not eager to ban arsenic.

One of the most interesting associations of arsenic laced wallpaper and a death is the case of Napolean Bonaparte.

Napoleon was only 51 when he died on the island of St. Helena, where he had been exiled from France and held captive by the British. There was instant speculation that the British had somehow murdered him. By May 5, 1821, he had been getting sicker for several months, suffering from recurrent abdominal pain, progressive weakness and severe constipation. His last weeks were plagued by vomiting, incessant hiccups, and blood clots in various parts of his body.

The physicians who conducted Napoleon’s autopsy, on May 6, 1821, concluded that his death was from stomach cancer, exacerbated by bleeding gastric ulcers, after a huge dose of calomel was administered to him on the day before he died. Calomel was a compound that contained mercury and was used as a medicine at that time before the dangers of mercury were known.

140 years later, in 1961, an article published in Nature Magazine made international headlines about analyzing a lock of Napoleon's hair which showed that Napoleon may have died from arsenic poisoning. It was proven that the wallpaper in Napoleon's living quarters at St. Helena did have arsenic laced wallpaper. This was greeted by acceptance with the public pleased that the real cause of death had finally been discovered. It was decades later when a rebuttal to the arsenic poisoning claim was presented. The rebuttal did say that in the bad old days of medicine the presence of arsenic was common and specifically mentioned wallpaper

Napoleon's family medical history of gastric carcinomas, and the advanced state of his stomach cancer and bleeding stress ulcers, suggest the initial autopsy results seem to be the most likely cause of death. But that does not negate the reality of arsenic laced wallpaper.

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Sexy Men Of The Zodiac

Why is a woman drawn to one man over another? Could it have anything to do with his astrological sign? What are the seductive qualities of each man of the Zodiac? I recently read an article exploring this concept. What is so appealing about the men of the various signs?

Aries (March 21 – April 19)

The Aries Ram is youthful, no matter what his age is. He is ruled by action-oriented Mars. His passion for life is legendary. He often tends to live on the edge which can be exciting, but dangerous. He's not known for his discretion or fidelity in his youth, however later in life he learns to settle down.

Taurus (April 20 – May 20)

The Taurus Bull has an earthy charm and a confidence that makes him sexy, even if he's not classically handsome. He's fun and flirtatious, but when it comes to commitment he moves slowly. He's likely to stay single until someone really special comes along, but when that happens he'll take his time and wait until that special woman comes around.

Gemini (May 21 – June 20)

The Gemini Twin has a twinkle in his eye and a wiggle of his cute ass. He's a real delight with his quick repartee and sexy comebacks. Nobody speaks the language of seduction better. His Twin aspect shows he has a strong feminine as well as masculine side which says he understands the way both sexes think, something that melts your defenses.

Cancer (June 21 – July 22)

The Cancer Crab is a sweetheart who'll win you over with his sexy smile and unassuming manner. He'll do just about anything for those he loves. Whether he's protecting you or relaxing in your warm embrace, he's a family man through and through who's definitely in it for the long haul.

Leo (July 23 – August 22)

The Leo Lion is a natural showman and has a sexy, devil-may-care wit. Like his ruler, the Sun, he radiates manly confidence despite his insecurities and won't back down from a fight. In essence, he's a hero and his strength is his most appealing quality. Even the quieter Leo has a thrilling sense of masculinity about him.

Virgo (August 23 – September 22)

The Virgo man is intelligent and thoughtful. He remembers your birthday and your favorite perfume. Being ruled by lightning-quick Mercury has his mind going a mile a minute. He tends to be overly analytical and sometimes critical. And just when he's about to drive you crazy with his fussiness, he'll give you a sexy, sheepish grin and melt your heart. His intelligence is his sexiest quality.

Libra (September 23 – October 22)

The Libra man understands and adores his lovers which is a very attractive quality. He's ruled by Venus, the planet of love, and knows how to treat a woman. Candlelight dinners and romantic walks on the beach appeal to him, but he's also the thinking person's turn-on. With his quick mind and way with words, he's always up for a discussion about relationships or culture, and is a champion of fidelity and civil rights.

Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)

The Scorpio man has a quiet intensity that will reel you in. With smoldering eyes and a sultry voice, the guy can literally mesmerize you which is why Scorpios make good magicians and hypnotists. His sexual magnetism comes from deep inside and its power formidable. He's not a good match for the woman who wants to stay on the surface of things.

Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)

The Sagittarius Archer's attraction is the call of the wild in his soul and that far-off look in his eye. "Don't fence me in" is his motto. Like his signature animal the horse, he responds to gentle caresses and soothing words.

Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)

The Capricorn Goat has it together, or at least projects the image of being in control. He's ruled by the ambitious Saturn and is a master of the material world and has a seductive attractiveness that goes with that kind of worldly power. He always aims for the top. You can't keep this guy down for long.

Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)

The Aquarius man doesn't fit the mold. He's a true free spirit who follows his own drummer. He's the type who is usually ahead of his time whose quirkiness is part of his genius. As ruled by the inventive Uranus, he'll dazzle you with utopian ideas and turn you on to worlds you never knew existed. He'll keep you guessing and take you to the edge sexually. However emotionally, he tends to be reticent and doesn't like to talk about feelings.

Pisces (February 19 – March 20)

The sensitive and caring Pisces Fish fills you with tingly feelings as he swims straight into your heart. Pisces loves to touch and be touched and often communicates best non-verbally. Sex and spirit are one in the same to the guy which makes your lovemaking ecstatic.

Sunday, January 14, 2024

Those Lusty Gods Of Mythology And Their Sexy Pursuits

Whether Deity or Demon, the supernatural entities of the ancient world had one thing in common.  More often than not, they used their magical skills for the pursuit of sex…lots of it.

In today's world, someone with the powers attributed to the gods and monsters of ancient mythology might ideally use those abilities to banish ignorance, intolerance, and hate to make the world a better place for everyone.  But in the ancient world, the rulers of mythology used their special powers for a far more down-to-earth human type pursuit—that of participating in hot sex as often as possible.

Here are six such immortals from the ancient world who seem to be in a perpetual state of heat, always chasing after the pleasures derived from seducing mortals.

6)  Zeus:  The ancient Greeks didn't have reality television and the internet, but they did have the exploits of Zeus, king of the gods, to keep them entertained.  Zeus wasn't at all picky.  He engaged in sex with goddesses, nymphs, and mortals and did whatever it took to get what he wanted.  Kinky, freaky, voracious.  It all described his sexual appetite.  On one occasion he even took on the physical appearance of the husband of a human woman named Alcmene and they had a son named Heracles (Hercules in Roman mythology).  But even the king of the gods ended up in trouble on the home front.  High up on Mt. Olympus, his wife, Hera, was a woman of earth-shattering powers and didn't hesitate to use them.

5)  The Incubus/Succubus:  Today wet dreams are easily explained.  In medieval times, however, they were believed to be the result of demonic forces.  Folklore from centuries ago says there was a demonic creature whose sole purpose was to have sex with people while they were sleeping.  The incubus put a spell on a woman to make her compliant then proceeded to have his way with her.  The succubus was the female version of this demon who seduced men in their sleep.  Sex with an incubus or succubus was considered dangerous for the mortal, but not always lethal.  A one time only encounter said the mortal would most likely survive.  But continued encounters with the same mortal were definitely bad for the mortal's health.

4)  Odin:  King of the Norse gods, Odin only had one eye.  He traded the other one for infinite wisdom.  And what knowledge did this infinite wisdom impart to him?  It said hot sex was a lot of fun.  One time he found himself really turned on by a female giant named Jord.  He refused to allow the fact that his non-giant manhood was dwarfed by her giant body to stand in his way.  He figured out a physical means for them to have sex.  Nine months later, Thor was born.

3)  Krishna:  The Hindu god Krishna wasn't only about hot sex and good times.  When his good-for-nothing uncle, Kamsa, crossed that hypothetical line in the sand one too many times, Krishna put him six feet under the sand without giving it a second thought.  Krishna loved to get freaky with the ladies.  He had a flute and when he played it women would flock to him.

2)  Pan:  The Greek god, Pan, had a goat-like appearance.  He would have fit in perfectly with one of today's college frat houses—he was all about partying.  He liked to drink and was cursed (or blessed, depending on how you look at it) with an intense sex drive.  He often ran around with his bare erection visible for all to see.  Like Krishna, he used his magic flute to draw in the ladies.  He seduced Selene, the moon goddess, and convinced her that having sex with him was a great idea.

1)  The Meek-Moos-Ak:  The Native American tribe known as the Abenaki believed in these short twin creatures called the Meek-moos-ak.  They ran around drunk, killing hunters and having sex with women.  Their legend said that once a woman had sex with them, she was cursed to never desire marriage.

So, the moral of this story is that should you find yourself covered in a strange substance and it gives you the power to shape-shift or play a mean flute, use it for sex.  After all, everyone else did.  :)