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I think your GF would buy a bridge from an expert.
And, as to your fluery friend.  The claim about the knife is obviously
bull$#1T, for the reasons you sighted.  I suspect his other claim is
similar to that of many of Irish decent.

looks like .....
      smells like ......
..
....

>For example, I recently met some young Frog who claimed to be a descendent
>of the kings of Morocco.  He showed me a "gold" knife which he claimed had
>worn into combat by kings over a thousand years ago, and had been used to
>kill people.  Now when I was a kid I used to be fascinated with knights,
>and by extension their armor and weaponry.  I visited collections around
>the world (Worcester, MA, New York City, France, Germany, etc), and read
>at least a few books.  I learned that the ornately decorated armor and
>swords were not used for combat, but rather ceremonially, such as at a
>coronation, wedding, or parade.  Often the decorations and made them
>impractical or downright unusable for combat.  Both sides of the blade of
>this "Moroccan" "gold" dagger were inlaid with intricate patterns.  Not
>only is gold an impractical material for "deadly" daggers b/c of its
>weight and softness, but also the deep engraving would make sharpening of
>the blade impractical.  When, as we drove home, I noted to my girlfriend
>with confidence that the knife was probably not ever used to kill anyone
>but instead was ceremonial, she called me arrogant for making such an
>observation without being an "expert."
>
>The age of renaissance men is apparently dead and buried.  This makes
>sense (not just because of feminism's relatively successful demands for
>inclusive language), since the ideal of a liberal arts education seems to
>have perished under the onslaught of our modern-day pecuniary philosophy.
>
>With conviction and authority,
>
>El Scorpion
>
>On Fri, 30 Jul 2004, Mann, Dave wrote:
>
>
>
>>>[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Bruno deBiasi
>>>An individual must be _quoted_by_the_media_ to be considered an
>>>'expert'; it is not enough for one to say something with
>>>conviction and authority to be an 'expert' in our culture. If it's
>>>
>>>
>>quoted in
>>
>>
>>>print, or on television or radio, only then does something said with
>>>
>>>
>>conviction
>>
>>
>>>and authority become so.
>>>
>>>
>>Sad but true. Anti-intellectuallism runs deep in our culture.
>>Media defines the chess board.
>>
>>What's really funny is the large extent to which media blurbs,
>>quotes, articles and even expertise is manufactured.
>>
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>
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