Everything2 is a collection of user-submitted writings about more or less everything. Spend some time looking around and reading, or learn how to contribute.

Cream of the Cool

Earth is a haunted house. It always has been. 

There is no heaven or hell. No Hades or Fiddler's Green or Valhalla. There's no escape to a better -- or worse -- world after death. There's just Earth. And yes, the soul exists, and it's eternal. Anything that ever lived -- every person, every animal, every fish and bird and spider and even the plants -- eventually becomes a ghost. Forever. Forever and ever. 

Some of the ghosts get to be interesting. They get to be Headless Horsemen or…

Bandito is a familiar English word used to refer to a bandit, especially one in Mexico or the American southwest. While it is familiar to most English speakers, especially Americans, it is not a word in common rotation in most people's vocabulary. It came into popular culture by way of the spaghetti western and related media, and stuck around specifically in the context of westerns.

Bandito comes from Italian, being the past participle of bandire, the verb…

Mona is a common English given name. It was fairly consistently a popular name in the UK and America until the 1970s, dropping out of the top 1000 most poplar names for girls in the USA in 1984. Its popularity peaked in the 1930s and again in the 50s (raking in the mid-200s in popularity), but these were not sharp peaks, and historically it had rarely been out of the top 500 most popular.

It has at least three distinct etymological origins. In Irish and English is comes from the…

The defining experience of my life is secondary school. I attended a military school from 1992 to 1997. I actually enrolled in November 1991, but since the academic calendar had been changed that year, our set was the 1992 set. I had applied to the school because an older cousin who was a student used to come around and he looked really sharp in his uniform.

The school had a fagging culture. This means that seniors had power over juniors. Seniors could hit juniors for any reason or no reason.…