Twelve years a slave by Solomon Northup - Part 2


Twelve Years a Slave, was written by Solomon Northup, a citizen of New-York, that was kidnapped in Washington city ano 1841, and later rescued from slavery in 1853 from a cotton plantation near the Red River in Louisiana, Edited by David Wilson; 1859; C.M. Saxton, New York.


Chapters and pages







Some three hours,

elapsed, during which time I remained seated on the low bench, absorbed in painful meditations. At length I heard the crowing of a cock, and soon a distant rumbling sound, as of carriages hurrying through the streets, came to my ears, and I knew that it was day. No ray of light, however, penetrated my prison. Finally, I heard footsteps immediately overhead, as of some one walking to and fro. It occurred to me then that I must be in an underground apartment, and the damp, mouldy odors of the place confirmed the supposition. The noise above continued for at least an hour, when, at last, I heard footsteps approaching from without. A key rattled in the lock—a strong door swung back upon its hinges, admitting a flood of light, and two men entered and stood before me. One of them was a large, powerful man, forty years of age, perhaps, with dark, chestnut-colored hair, slightly interspersed with gray. His face was full, his complexion flush, his features grossly coarse, expressive of nothing but cruelty and cunning. He was about five feet ten inches high, of full habit, and, without prejudice, I must be allowed to say, was a man whose whole appearance was sinister and repugnant. His name was James H. Burch, as I learned afterwards—a well-known slave-dealer in Washington; and then, or lately connected in business, as a partner, with Theophilus Freeman, of New-Orleans. The person who accompanied him was a simple lackey, named Ebenezer Radburn, who acted merely in the capacity of turnkey. Both of these men still live in Washington, or did, at the time of my return through that city from slavery in January last.

The light admitted through the open door enabled me to observe the room in which I was confined. It was about twelve feet square—the walls of solid masonry. The floor was of heavy plank. There was one small window, crossed with great iron bars, with an outside shutter, securely fastened.

An iron-bound door led into an adjoining cell, or vault, wholly destitute of windows, or any means of admitting light. The furniture of the room in which I was, consisted of the wooden bench on which I sat, an old-fashioned, dirty box stove, and besides these, in either cell, there was neither bed, nor blanket, nor any other thing whatever. The door, through which Burch and Radburn entered, led through a small passage, up a flight of steps into a yard, surrounded by a brick wall ten or twelve feet high, immediately in rear of a building of the same width as itself. The yard extended rearward from the house about thirty feet. In one part of the wall there was a strongly ironed door, opening into a narrow, covered passage, leading along one side of the house into the street. The doom of the colored man, upon whom the door leading out of that narrow passage closed, was sealed. The top of the wall supported one end of a roof, which ascended inwards, forming a kind of open shed. Underneath the roof there was a crazy loft all round, where slaves, if so disposed, might sleep at night, or in inclement weather seek shelter from the storm. It was like a farmer's barnyard in most respects, save it was so constructed that the outside world could never see the human cattle that were herded there.

a Building, two stories high

The building to which the yard was attached, was two stories high, fronting on one of the public streets of Washington. Its outside presented only the appearance of a quiet private residence. A stranger looking at it, would never have dreamed of its execrable uses. Strange as it may seem, within plain sight of this same house, looking down from its commanding height upon it, was the Capitol. The voices of patriotic representatives boasting of freedom and equality, and the rattling of the poor slave's chains, almost commingled. A slave pen within the very shadow of the Capitol!

Such is a correct description as it was in 1841, of Williams' slave pen in Washington, in one of the cellars of which I found myself so unaccountably confined. "Well, my boy, how do you feel now?" said Burch, as he entered through the open door. I replied that I was sick, and inquired the cause of my imprisonment. He answered that I was his slave— that he had bought me, and that he was about to send me to New-Orleans. I asserted, aloud and boldly, that I was a freeman—a resident of Saratoga, where I had a wife and children, who were also free, and that my name was Northup. I complained bitterly of the strange treatment I had received, and threatened, upon my liberation, to have satisfaction for the wrong. He denied that I was free, and with an emphatic oath, declared that I came from Georgia. Again and again I asserted I was no man's slave, and insisted upon his taking off my chains at once. He endeavored to hush me, as if he feared my voice would be overheard. But I would not be silent, and denounced the authors of my imprisonment, whoever they might be, as unmitigated villains. Finding he could not quiet me, he flew into a towering passion. With blasphemous oaths, he called me a black liar, a runaway from Georgia, and every other profane and vulgar epithet that the most indecent fancy could conceive.

During this time Radburn was standing silently by. His business was, to oversee this human, or rather inhuman stable, receiving slaves, feeding, and whipping them, at the rate of two shillings a head per day. Turning to him, Burch ordered the paddle and cat-o'-ninetails to be brought in. He disappeared, and in a few moments returned with these instruments of torture. The paddle, as it is termed in slave-beating parlance, or at least the one with which I first became acquainted, and of which I now speak, was a piece of hard-wood board, eighteen or twenty inches long, moulded to the shape of an old-fashioned pudding stick, or ordinary oar The flattened portion, which was about the size in circumference of two open hands, was bored with a small auger in numerous places. The cat was a large rope of many strands— the strands unraveled, and a knot tied at the extremity of each.


06


12 years a Slave

By Solomon Northup, born July 10, 1807,
Husband of Anne Hampton
Michael A Koontz & Teresa Stover



Author

Solomon Northup


Web adaptation and photography

Michael A Koontz
Teresa Stover

    Google+
   Author page, Michael A Koontz








As soon as these formidable,

whips appeared, I was seized by both of them, and roughly divested of my clothing. My feet, as has been stated, were fastened to the floor. Drawing me over the bench, face downwards, Radburn placed his heavy foot upon the fetters, between my wrists, holding them painfully to the floor. With the paddle, Burch commenced beating me. Blow after blow was inflicted upon my naked body. When his unrelenting arm grew tired, he stopped and asked if I still insisted I was a free man. I did insist upon it, and then the blows were renewed, faster and more energetically, if possible, than before. When again tired, he would repeat the same question, and receiving the same answer, continue his cruel labor. All this time, the incarnate devil was uttering most fiendish oaths. At length the paddle broke, leaving the useless handle in his hand. Still I would not yield. All his brutal blows could not force from my lips the foul lie that I was a slave. Casting madly on the floor the handle of the broken paddle, he seized the rope. This was far more painful than the other. I struggled with all my power, but it was in vain. I prayed for mercy, but my prayer was only answered with imprecations and with stripes. I thought I must die beneath the lashes of the accursed brute. Even now the flesh crawls upon my bones, as I recall the scene. I was all on fire. My sufferings I can compare to nothing else than the burning agonies of hell!

At last I became silent to his repeated questions. I would make no reply. In fact, I was becoming almost unable to speak. Still he plied the lash without stint upon my poor body, until it seemed that the lacerated flesh was stripped from my bones at every stroke. A man with a particle of mercy in his soul would not have beaten even a dog so cruelly. At length Radburn said that it was useless to whip me any more—that I would be sore enough. Thereupon Burch desisted, saying, with an admonitory shake of his fist in my face, and hissing the words through his firm-set teeth, that if ever I dared to utter again that I was entitled to my freedom, that I had been kidnapped, or any thing whatever of the kind, the castigation I had just received was nothing in comparison with what would follow. He swore that he would either conquer or kill me.

With these consolatory words, the fetters were taken from my wrists, my feet still remaining fastened to the ring; the shutter of the little barred window, which had been opened, was again closed, and going out, locking the great door behind them, I was left in darkness as before.

In an hour, perhaps two, my heart leaped to my throat, as the key rattled in the door again. I, who had been so lonely, and who had longed so ardently to see some one, I cared not who, now shuddered at the thought of man's approach. A human face was fearful to me, especially a white one. Radburn entered, bringing with him, on a tin plate, a piece of shriveled fried pork, a slice of bread and a cup of water. He asked me how I felt, and remarked that I had received a pretty severe flogging. He remonstrated with me against the propriety of asserting my freedom. In rather a patronizing and confidential manner, he gave it to me as his advice, that the less I said on that subject the better it would be for me. The man evidently endeavored to appear kind—whether touched at the sight of my sad condition, or with the view of silencing, on my part, any further expression of my rights, it is not necessary now to conjecture. He unlocked the festers from my ankles, opened the shutters of the little window, and departed, leaving me again alone.

By this time I had become stiff and sore; my body was covered with blisters, and it was with great pain and difficulty that I could move. From the window I could observe nothing but the roof resting on the adjacent wall. At night I laid down upon the damp, hard floor, without any pillow or covering whatever. Punctually, twice a day, Radburn came in, with his pork, and bread, and water. I had but little appetite, though I was tormented with continual thirst. My wounds would not permit me to remain but a few minutes in any one position; so, sitting, or standing, or moving slowly round, I passed the days and nights. I was heart sick and discouraged. Thoughts of my family, of my wife and children, continually occupied my mind. When sleep overpowered me I dreamed of them—dreamed I was again in Saratoga—that I could see their faces, and hear their voices calling me.

Awakening from the pleasant phantasms of sleep to the bitter realities around me, I could but groan and weep. Still my spirit was not broken. I indulged the anticipation of escape, and that speedily. It was impossible, I reasoned, that men could be so unjust as to detain me as a slave, when the truth of my case was known. Burch, ascertaining I was no runaway from Georgia, would certainly let me go. Though suspicions of Brown and Hamilton were not unfrequent, I could not reconcile myself to the idea that they were instrumental to my imprisonment. Surely they would seek me out—they would deliver me from thraldom. Alas! I had not then learned the measure of "man's inhumanity to man," nor to what limitless extent of wickedness he will go for the love of gain.

In the course of several days the outer door was thrown open, allowing me the liberty of the yard. There I found three slaves—one of them a lad of ten years, the others young men of about twenty and twenty-five. I was not long in forming an acquaintance, and learning their names and the particulars of their history.

The eldest was a colored man named Clemens Ray. He had lived in Washington; had driven a hack, and worked in a livery stable there for a long time. He was very intelligent, and fully comprehended his situation. The thought of going south overwhelmed him with grief. Burch had purchased him a few days before, and had placed him there until such time as he was ready to send him to the New-Orleans market. From him I learned for the first time that I was in William's Slave Pen., a place I had never heard of previously. He described to me the uses for which it was designed. I repeated to him the particulars of my unhappy story, but he could only give me the consolation of his sympathy. He also advised me to be silent henceforth on the subject of my freedom for, knowing, the character of Burch, he assured me that it would only be attended with renewed whip-ping. The next eldest was named John Williams. He was raised in Virginia, not far from Washington. Burch had taken him in payment of a debt, and he constantly entertained the hope that his master would redeem him—a hope that was subsequently realized.

The lad was a sprightly child, that answered to the name of Randall. Most of the time he was playing about the yard, but occasionally would cry, calling for his mother, and wondering when she would come. His mother's absence seemed to be the great and only grief in his little heart. He was too young to realize his condition, and when the memory of his mother was not in his mind, he amused us with his pleasant pranks.

Ray williams and the boy

At night, Ray, Williams, and the boy, slept in the loft of the shed, while I was locked in the cell. Finally we were each provided with blankets, such as are used upon horses—the only bedding I was allowed to have for twelve years afterwards. Ray and Williams asked me many questions about New-York —how colored people were treated there; how they could have homes and families of their own, with none to disturb and oppress them; and Ray, especially, sighed continually for freedom. Such conversations, however, were not in the hearing of Burch, or the keeper Radburn. Aspirations such as these would have brought down the lash upon our backs.

It is necessary in this narrative, in order to present a full and truthful statement of all the principal events in the history of my life, and to portray the institution of Slavery as I have seen and known it, to speak of well-known places, and of many persons who are yet living. I am, and always was, an entire stranger in Washington and its vicinity—aside from Burch and Radburn, knowing no man there, except as I have heard of them through my enslaved companions What I am about to say, if false, can be easily contradicted. I remained in Williams, slave pen about two weeks. The night previous to my departure a woman was brought in, weeping bitterly, and leading by the hand a little child. They were Randall's mother and half-sister. On meeting them he was overjoyed, clinging to her dress, kissing the child, and exhibiting every demonstration of delight. The mother also clasped him in her arms, embraced him tenderly, and gazed at him fondly through her tears, calling him by many an endearing name.

Emily, the child, was seven or eight years old, of light complexion, and with a face of admirable beauty. Her hair fell in curls around her neck, while the style and richness of her dress, and the neatness of her whole appearance indicated she had been brought up in the midst of wealth. She was a sweet child indeed. The woman also was arrayed in silk, with rings upon her fingers, and golden ornaments suspended from her ears. Her air and manners, the correctness and propriety of her language—all showed evidently, that she had sometime stood above the common level of a slave. She seemed to be amazed at finding herself in such a place as that. It was plainly a sudden and unexpected turn of fortune that had brought her there. Filling the air with her complaining she was hustled, with the children and myself, into the cell. Language can convey but an inadequate impression of the lamentations to which she gave incessant utterance. Throwing herself upon the floor, and encircling the children in her arms, she poured forth such touching words as only maternal love and kindness can suggest. They nestled closely to her, as if there only was there any safety or protection. At last they slept, their heads resting upon her lap. While they slumbered, she smoothed the hair back from their little foreheads, and talked to them all night long. She called them her darlings —her sweet babes—poor innocent things, that knew not the misery they were destined to endure. Soon they would have no mother to comfort them—they would be taken from her. What would become of them? Oh! she could not live away from her little Emmy and her dear boy. They had always been good children, and had such loving ways. It would break her heart, God knew, she said, if they were taken from her; and yet she knew they meant to sell them, and, may be, they would be separated, and could never see each other any more. It was enough to melt heart of stone to listen to the pitiful expressions of that desolate and distracted mother

Her name was Eliza; and this was the story of her life, as she afterwards related it: She was the slave of a rich man, living in the neighborhood of Washington. She was born, I think she said, on his plantation. Years before, he had fallen into dissipated habits, and quarreled with his wife. In fact, soon after the birth of Randall, they separated. Leaving his wife and daughter in the house they had always occupied, he erected a new one nearby, on the estate. Into this house he brought Eliza; and, on condition of her living with him, she and her children were to be emancipated. She resided with him there nine years, with servants to attend upon her, and provided with every comfort and luxury of life. Emily was his child! Finally, her young mistress, who had always remained with her mother at the homestead, married a Mr. Jacob Brooks. At length, for some cause, (as I gathered from her relation,) beyond Berry's control, a division of his property was made. She and her children fell to the share of Mr. Brooks. During the nine years she had lived with Berry, in consequence of the position she was compelled to occupy, she and Emily had become the object of Mrs. Berry and her daughter's hatred and dislike. Berry himself she represented as a man of naturally a kind heart, who always promised her that she should have her freedom, and who, she had no doubt, would arrant it to her then, if it were only in his power. As soon as they thus came into the possession and control of the daughter, it became very manifest they would not live long together. The sight of Eliza seemed to be odious to Mrs. Brooks; neither could she bear to look upon the child, half-sister, and beautiful as she was!

The grave of Eliza The day she was led into the pen, Brooks had brought her from the estate into the city, under pretence that the time had come when her free papers were to be executed, in fulfillment of her master's promise. Elated at the prospect of immediate liberty, she decked herself and little Emmy in their best apparel, and accompanied him with a joyful heart. On their arrival in the city, instead of being baptized into the family of freemen, she was delivered to the trader Burch. The paper that was executed was a bill of sale. The hope of years was blasted in a moment. From the hight of most exulting happiness to the utmost depths of wretchedness, she had that day descended. No wonder that she wept, and filled the pen with wailings and expressions of heart-rending woe.

Eliza is now dead. Far up the Red River, where it pours its waters sluggishly through the unhealthy low lands of Louisiana, she rests in the grave at last— the only resting place of the poor slave! How all her fears were realized—how she mourned day and night, and never would be comforted—how, as she predicted, her heart did indeed break, with the burden of maternal sorrow, will be seen as the narrative proceeds.


07


12 years a Slave

By Solomon Northup, born July 10, 1807,
Husband of Anne Hampton
Michael A Koontz & Teresa Stover

Chapter

four, page 8

starts


now









At intervals during the,

first night of Eliza's incarceration in the pen, she complained bitterly of Jacob Brook's, her young mistress' husband. She declared that had she been aware of the deception he intended to practice upon her, he never would have brought her there alive. They had chosen the opportunity of getting her away when Master Berry was absent from the plantation. He had always been kind to her. She wished that she could see him; but she knew that even he was unable now to rescue her. Then would she commence weeping again—kissing the sleeping children—talking first to one, then to the other, as they lay in their unconscious slumbers, with their heads upon her lap. So wore the long night away; and when the morning dawned, and night had come again, still she kept mourning on, and would not be consoled.

About midnight following, the cell door opened, and Burch and Radburn entered, with lanterns in their hands. Burch, with an oath, ordered us to roll up our blankets without delay, and get ready to go on board tile boat. He swore we would be left unless we hurried fast. He aroused the children from their slumbers with a rough shake, and said they were d-d sleepy, it appeared. Going out into the yard, he called Clem Ray, ordering him to leave the loft and come into the cell, and bring his blanket with him. When Clem appeared, he placed us side by side, and fastened us together with hand-cuffs—my left hand to his right. John Williams had been taken out a day or two before, his master having redeemed him, greatly to his delight. Clem and I were ordered to march, Eliza and the children following, We were conducted into the yard, from thence into the covered passage, and up a flight of steps through a side door into the upper room, where I had heard the walking to and fro. Its furniture was a stove, a few old chairs, and a long table, covered with papers. It was a white-washed room, without any carpet on the floor, and seemed a sort of office. By one of the windows, I remember, hung a rusty sword, which attracted my attention. Burch's trunk was there. In obedience to his orders, I took hold of one of its handles with my unfettered hand, while he taking hold of the other, we proceeded out of the front door into the street in the same order as we had left the cell.

It was a dark night. All was quiet. I could see lights, or the reflection of them, over towards Pennsylvania Avenue, but there was no one, not even a straggler, to be seen. I was almost resolved to attempt to break away. Had I not been hand-cuffed the attempt would certainly have been made, whatever consequence might have followed. Radburn was in the rear, carrying a large stick, and hurrying up the children as fast as the little ones could walk. So we passed, hand-cuffed and in silence, through the streets of Washington through the Capital of a nation, whose theory of government, we are told, rests on the foundation of man's inalienable right to life, LIBERTY, and the pursuit of happiness! Hail! Columbia, happy land, indeed!

Reaching the steamboat, we were quickly hustled into the hold, among barrels and boxes of freight. A colored servant brought a light, the bell rung, and soon the vessel started down the Potomac, carrying us we knew not where. The bell tolled as we passed the tomb of Washington! Burch, no doubt, with uncovered head, bowed reverently before the sacred ashes of the man who devoted his illustrious life to the liberty of his country.

None of us slept that night but Randall and little Emmy. For the first time Clem Ray was wholly overcome. To him the idea of going south was terrible in the extreme. He was leaving the friends and associations of his youth every thing, that was dear and precious to his heart—in all probability never to return. He and Eliza mingled their tears together, bemoaning their cruel fate. For my own part, difficult as it was, I endeavored to keep up my spirits. I resolved in my mind a hundred plans of escape, and fully determined to make the attempt the first desperate chance that offered. I had by this time become satisfied, however, that my true policy was to say nothing further on the subject of my having been born a freeman. It would but expose me to mal-treatment, and diminish the chances of liberation.

After sunrise in the morning we were called up on deck to breakfast. Burch took our hand-cuffs off, and we sat down to table. He asked Eliza if she would take a dram. She declined, thanking him politely. During the meal we were all silent—not a word passed between us. A mulatto woman who served at table seemed to take an interest in our behalf—told us to cheer up, and not to be so cast down. Breakfast over, the hand-cuffs were restored, and Burch ordered us out on the stern deck. We sat down together on some boxes, still saying nothing in Burch's presence. Occasionally a passenger would walk out to where we were, look at us for a while, then silently return.

It was a very pleasant morning. The fields along the river were covered with verdure, far in advance of what I had been accustomed to see at that season of the year. The sun shone out warmly; the birds were singing in the trees. The happy birds—I envied them. I wished for wings like them, that I might cleave the air to where my birdlings waited vainly for their father's coming, in the cooler region. of the North.


08


12 years a Slave

By Solomon Northup, born July 10, 1807,
Husband of Anne Hampton
Michael A Koontz & Teresa Stover












In the forenoon,

the steamer reached Aquia Creek. There the passengers took stages—Burch and his five slaves occupying one exclusively. He laughed with the children, and at one stopping place went so far as to purchase them a piece of gingerbread.

He told me to hold up my head and look smart. That I might, perhaps, get a good master if I behaved myself. I made him no reply. His face was hateful to me, and I could not bear to look upon it. I sat in the corner, cherishing in my heart the hope, not yet extinct, of some day meeting the tyrant on the soil of my native State.

At Fredericksburgh we were transferred from the stage coach to a car, and before dark arrived in Richmond, the chief city of Virginia. At this city we were taken from the cars, and driven through the street to a slave pen, between the railroad depot and the river, kept by a Mr. Goodin. This pen is similar to Williams' in Washington, except it is somewhat larger; and besides, there were two small houses standing at opposite corners within the yard. These houses are susually found within slave yards, being used as rooms for the examination of human chattels by purchasers before concluding a bargain. Unsoundness in a slave, as well as in a horse, detracts materially from his value. If no warranty is given, a close examination is a matter of particular importance to the negro jockey.

We were met at the door of Goodin's yard by that gentleman himself—a short, fat man, with a round, plump face, black hair and whiskers, and a complexion almost as dark as some of his own negroes. He had a hard, stern look, and was perhaps about fifty years of age. Burch and he met with great cordiality. They were evidently old friends. Shaking each other warmly by the hand, Burch remarked he had brought some company, inquired at what time the brig would leave, and was answered that it would probably leave the next day at such an hour. Goodin then turned to me, took hold of my arm, turned me partly round, looked at me sharply with the air of one who considered himself a good judge of property, and as if estimating in his own mind about how much I was worth.

"Well, boy, where did you come from?" Forgetting myself, for a moment, I answered, "From New-York."

New York, New York

"New-York! H--l! what have you been doing up there?" was his astonished interrogatory.

Observing Burch at this moment looking at me with an angry expression that conveyed a meaning it was not difficult to understand, I immediately said, "O, I have only been up that way a piece," in a manner intended to imply that although I might have been as far as New-York, yet I wished it distinctly understood that I did not belong to that free State, nor to any other.

Goodin then turned to Clem, and then to Eliza and the children, examining them severally, and asking various questions. He was pleased with Emily, as was every one who saw the child's sweet countenance. She was not as tidy as when I first beheld her; her hair was now somewhat disheveled; but through its unkempt and soft profusion there still beamed a little face of most surpassing loveliness. "Altogether we were a fair lot—a devilish good lot," he said, enforcing that opinion with more than one emphatic adjective not found in the Christian vocabulary. Thereupon we passed into the yard. Quite a number of slaves, as many as thirty I should say, were moving about, or sitting on benches under the shed. They were all cleanly dressed—the men with hats, the women with handkerchiefs tied about their heads.

Burch and Goodin, after separating from us, walked up the steps at the back part of the main building, and sat down upon the door sill. They entered into conversation, but the subject of it I could not hear. Presently Burch came down into the yard, unfettered me, and led me into one of the small houses.

"You told that man you came from New-York," said he.

I replied, "I told him I had been up as far as New-York, to be sure, but did not tell him I belonged there, nor that I was a freeman. I meant no harm at all, Master Burch. I would not have said it had I thought." He looked at me a moment as if he was ready to devour me, then turning round went out. In a few minutes he returned. "If ever I hear you say a word about New-York, or about your freedom, I will be the death of you—I will kill you; you may rely on that," he ejaculated fiercely.

I doubt not he understood then better than I did, the danger and the penalty of selling a free man into slavery. He felt the necessity of closing my mouth against the crime he knew he was committing. Of course, my life would not have weighed a feather, in any emergency requiring such a sacrifice. Undoubtedly, he meant precisely what he said.

Under the shed on one side of the yard, there was constructed a rough table, while overhead were sleeping lofts—the same as in the pen at Washington. After partaking at this table of our supper of pork and bread, I was hand-cuffed to a large yellow man, quite stout and fleshy, with a countenance expressive of the utmost melancholy. He was a man of intelligence and information. Chained together, it was not long before we became acquainted with each other's history. His name was Robert. Like myself, he had been born free, and had a wife and two children in Cincinnati. He said he had come south with two men, who had hired him in the city of his residence. Without free papers, he had been seized at Fredericksburgh, placed in confinement, and beaten until he had learned, as I had, the necessity and the policy of silence. He had been in Goodin's pen about three weeks. To this man I became much attached. We could sympathize with, and understand each other. It was with tears and a heavy heart, not many days subsequently, that I saw him die, and looked for the last time upon his lifeless form!

Robert and myself, with Clem, Eliza and her children, slept that night upon our blankets, in one of the small houses in the yard. There were four others, all from the same plantation, who had been sold and were now on their way south, who also occupied it with us. David and his wife, Caroline, both mulattos, were exceedingly affected. They dreaded the thought of being put into the cane and cotton fields; but their greatest source of anxiety was the apprehension of being separated. Mary, a tall, lithe girl, of a most jetty black, was listless and apparently indifferent. Like many of the class, she scarcely knew there was such a word as freedom. Brought up in the ignorance of a brute, she possessed but little more than a brute's intelligence. She was one of those, and there are very many, who fear nothing but their master's lash, and know no further duty than to obey his voice. The other was Lethe. She was of an entirely different character. She had long, straight hair, and bore more the appearance of an Indian than a negro woman. She had sharp and spiteful eyes, and continually gave utterance to the language of hatred and revenge. Her husband had been sold. She knew not where she was. An exchange of masters, she was sure, could not be for the worse. She cared not whither they might carry her. Pointing to the scars upon her face, the desperate creature wished that she might see the day when she could wipe them off in some man's blood!

We swept the yard in the morning While we were thus learning the history of each other's wretchedness, Eliza was seated in a corner by herself, singing hymns and praying for her children. Wearied from the loss of so much sleep, I could no longer bear up against the advances of that "sweet restorer," and laying down by the side of Robert, on the floor, soon forgot my troubles, and slept until the dawn of day.

In the morning, having swept the yard, and washed ourselves, under Goodin's superintendence, we were ordered to roll up our blankets, and make ready for the continuance of our journey. Clem Ray was informed that he would go no further, Burch, for some cause, having concluded to carry him back to Washington. He was much rejoiced. Shaking hands, we parted in the slave pen at

Richmond, and I have not seen him since. But, much to my surprise, since my return, I learned that he had escaped from bondage, and on his way to the free soil of Canada, lodged one night at the house of my brother-in-law in Saratoga, informing my family of the place and the condition in which he left me.

In the afternoon we were drawn up, two abreast, Robert and myself in advance, and in this order, driven by Burch and Goodin from the yard, through the streets of Richmond to the brig Orleans. She was a vessel of respectable size, full rigged, and freighted principally with tobacco. We were all on board by five o'clock. Burch brought us each a tin cup and a spoon. There were forty of us in the brig, being all, except Clem, that were in the pen.

With a small pocket knife that had not been taken from me, I began cutting the initials of my name upon the tin cup. The others immediately flocked round me, requesting me to mark theirs in a similar manner. In time, I gratified them all, of which they did not appear to be forgetful.

We were all stowed away in the hold at night, and the hatch barred down. We laid on boxes, or where- ever there was room enough to stretch our blankets on the floor. Burch accompanied us no farther than Richmond, returning from that point to the capital with Clem. Not until the lapse of almost twelve years, to wit, in January last, in the Washington police office, did I set my eyes upon his face again.

James H. Burch was a slave-trader—buying men, women and children at low prices, and selling them at an advance. He was a speculator in human flesh —a disreputable calling—and so considered at the South. For the present he disappears from the scenes recorded in this narrative, but he will appear again before its close, not in the character of a man-whipping tyrant, but as an arrested, cringing criminal in a court of law, that failed to do him justice.












09


12 years a Slave

By Solomon Northup, born July 10, 1807,
Husband of Anne Hampton
Michael A Koontz & Teresa Stover

Chapter

five, page 10

starts


now







Last Few Published Books and Articles

  • Available Fine Art & Lifestyle products by Mike Koontz. All of our products are produced and sold through #Society6.

    Quality time needed: 8 minutes


    Your own life is your style
    contemporary art & products for your healthy fit life style



    Each of us is the sum of our own unique lifestyle, thoughts, and touch. Be it in person, or through the way we live. This uniqueness is evident even in our own persona. Each and every one of our life choices in all of life´s big and small moments. It is further, ever-present in the way we have slowly built and shaped the castle and life which we call our home.
    You can feel and see it, in the choices of your clothes, and other peoples fitness regime. It is persistent throughout our art choices and the way we train and live our very own healthy fit life.
    It is forever present inside our deeply individual thoughts, and it is perpetually stamped in the essence of our unique nature. Read on beyond the break and dwell deeper down into today's fitness school question.

  • Fitness school, question 44: What is the actual weight of one cm3 lean muscle mass, and will that weight per cm3 be able to also differ ever so minuscule between fit people and out of shape people (generally speaking that is).

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    A healthy life is a daily process created by making healthy science based choices.
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 44 in our School of Fitness.
    Time for a short and sweet little one.
    As stated in the subject line, lean muscle mass has another weight/density ratio than fat, so a body mass that is made up of more fat and less lean muscle mass will display a bigger mass at a lower body weight, while a body that has a greater amount of lean muscle mass will actually have a higher body weight compared to what its body mass might make you believe.


    Read on beyond the break and dwell deeper down into today's fitness school question.

  • Pressmeddelande: Biologiska mångfaldens dag 2019 tar en tur i naturen för en stund med naturfoto och fitness prat i Höga Kusten.

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    a Norse View & Scandinavian.fitness.
    Biologiska mångfaldens dag 2019, Höga Kusten, Sverige.



    Humlesafari, fladdermuslyssning, fjärilsbingo, krypletning och fågelvandring – den 22 maj uppmärksammas den internationella FN-dagen Biologiska mångfaldens dag med en mängd olika evenemang runt om i Sverige.

    Den årligen återkommande bmf dagen är numera en av Sveriges största naturhögtider och 2019 arrangerar naturorganisationer, kommuner, skolor, myndigheter,företag och privatpersoner över 200 aktiviteter runt om i landet, från Kiruna i norr till Ystad i söder. Det görs både för att visa upp vår artrika natur och för att uppmärksamma en av vår tids stora ödesfrågor – den oroväckande snabba förlusten av biologisk mångfald.

    I Höga Kusten arrangerar Mike från a Norse View och Scandinavian.fitness en dagstur ut i naturen där vi blandar naturfoto i en vacker insjömiljö och faktabaserat prat om kost, träning och hälsa.




  • 'The solitude of lonesome birds nest and winters white caress'.. Thoughts from a moment in life, spring 2019.

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    You are life itself.
    And life resonates in response to you....



    At any point in time there is a history of past moments, both lived and never experienced which all lead up to and beyond the here and now.
    Strings of time and lives stretching further out from this particular point in time as wilderness own roadside of multiplying pathways reaches out, leading perpetually forward and away into the branching future.




  • Fitness school, question 43: Will a daily shower of daylight increase your body's capacity to deal with a long range of biological issues?

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    Fitness is built upon the science of you.
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 43 in our School of Fitness.
    You already know that getting outside for your daily daylight shower is tremendously good for #VitaminD production and keeping your circadian clock healthy & primed.
    But that is not all.


    Getting out and about in daylight also boost your t cell capacity.

    But what exactly does that mean?, read on beyond the break and dwell deeper down into today's fitness school question.

  • Fitness school, question 42: Will maintained fitness reduce menstrual pain for the majority of women?

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    Fitness is built upon the science of you.
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 42 in our School of Fitness.
    Fitness has been established in scientific studies in the last few years as a health-improving daily life painkiller.
    Making it even better is the fact that it comes completely free of cost and nerve-wracking & time-consuming doctors appointment and unhealthy side-effects. Lowering pain and debilitating health issues such as arthritis while fortifying your lifespan and health.

    But is that tremendous gratis painkiller effect applicable to menstrual pain too?.

  • Wildlife Facts: Camelopardalis, 'The camel that could have been a leopard'.. What animal am I talking about right now?

    Quality time needed: 9 minutes

     

     

     
     

     Arctic Sunrise - Year 4.5 Billion
    The camel that could have been a leopard.

     


    One of planet Earth´s most unique land-living animals still roaming about in the wild also happens to be one of the cutest and most enchanting, and gentle colossuses that have ever existed. Yet, somehow, despite the towering size and unique characteristics of these majestic critters they are also one of the lesser talked about wildlife stars. And so it happens that by now they are like so many other species highly endangered without anyone really paying attention.

    But perhaps that is the reward that life gave these majestic beings that float across the land they call home as if they are majestic land dwelling whales. A backseat in the human consciousness as we proceeded to decimate their global population with 40 or so % in less than 30 years.

  • Fitness school, question 41: The science of our human fitness anatomy. Scalenus Anterior, medius and posterior.

    Quality time needed: 1 minute


    Fitness is built upon your own anatomy.
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 41 in our School of Fitness.
    Beneath the tasty, delicious joy and sexiness of a life built on plant-based food and fitness, the weights you lift, the miles you walk and run. The mountains you climb, and the sandbags you punch and kick there is not just a burning passion and increased life quality. Nor is it just a question of the enhanced health and joy you can touch and feel deep inside both body & mind.
    No, there is also this marvelously progressive thing called science. Because all the physical fitness things, the sweat and healthy living discipline that others see are ultimately powered by the all-encompassing facts of biological life.

  • Fitness school, question 40: The science of sugar and intestine tumors... In both mice & men.

    Quality time needed: 8 minutes


    Yet another study on food & health.

    Looking at the impact of sugar in food and beverages.



    Sugar is a much beloved sweetener. Craved like a lovers touch by most biological beings that dare to ever look into the abyss and allow its tastebuds to grace this natural force of addiction.


    But as much as all things living seemingly enjoy the taste of sugar and more modern artificial sweeteners. Scientifically speaking the bad health impact of sugar ( from obesity to diabetes and cancer risk, poor dental health and non existing nutritional value ) and other sweeteners have thankfully turned countless of humans into die hard "no sugar" please sentinels. So let us take a brief look at a brand new 2019 study and let us find out if this study too will add even more reasons to say no to sugar and other sweeteners in your food and beverages.

  • Fitness school, question 39: Telomeres, the fancy sounding tail that connects healthy fit aging with fitness activities. Dive right in as we take a look at recent studies.

    Quality time needed: 13 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 39 in our School of Fitness.
    I have talked about telomeres in years past, and fitness too obviously :).
    But such is the world of fitness, science, and health, it often revisits old "truths" and sometimes upends them because our knowledge has deepened, while new studies at other times will simply fortify and acknowledge what we already knew to be true.
    So what will happen today as we travel back to the world of that peachy sounding telomeres thingy that keeps wiggling its cute little tail inside of us? Let us find out.
    My Question:.
    For this particular study, published in European Heart Journal, Nov 2018, we´ll uncover what happens to the length of our telomeres when we do long distance endurance training, high-intensity sprint intervals, nothing at all or lift weights in a so-so way in the gym ( yeah, color me unimpressed by the strength plan in this study, but hold on to that thought as you read on because I will get back to the fairly inadequate strength training and why that too matters. ).
    The question, which option is the best for maintaining the length of our telomeres and what is the worst?.

  • Anthropocene & the survival of our brilliant but simpleminded species. Just another morning.

    Quality time needed: 5 minutes


    Breakfast stuff and morning thoughts.

    climate inaction is an existential threat.



    Nothing fancy or big worded to say today, I am just drinking some tasty fresh black coffee while various death metal songs keep pumping through my livingroom gear.
    Yes, what a glorious morning :).
    But while I am enjoying my morning routine, getting ready for the gym and my own workouts as well as the health and fitness regimes of today's PT clients I am also reading up on science and sustainability from around the world. And one of the pieces that stand out is a tonally laid-back piece by Swedish outlet DN. They spent the better part of a month or so following Swedish sustainability advocate Greta as she continues her quest to bring much-needed awareness to the sad state of the world and the essential, deep-rooted changes we as a species and global civilization urgently need to undertake.

  • Fitness school, question 38. Is obesity itself tied to diabetes type 2 and coronary artery disease?. Yes or no?.

    Quality time needed: 5 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 38 in our School of Fitness.
    Time for a short one.
    Obesity is no friend of the bettering of our health and longevity.
    Just as how the old school act of serious bulking never did anyone's health and fitness levels any favors. And pointing this scientific reality out is not about fat shaming. It´s about helping the world and its individuals turn the tide toward better health, and better fitness. And doing so does not remove peoples individual right to pick whatever body size and fat percentage that they so prefer.
    My Question:.
    We already know that obesity ( and a fat powered high BMI ) increases unhealthy factors such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. And it often increases depression, drowsiness and general sedentary choices. Which indirectly leads to worse health in numerous ways. But if a person with a high fat powered BMI is deemed healthy as far as those traditional markers are concerned is excess fat itself still bad?
    Put in another way, will a higher amount of excess body fat still lead to worse health even if your bloodwork turns out ok and you do not feel depressed and drowsy and you do hit the gym?.

  • Fitness school, question 37: Can something as simple as a reduction of daily walking decrease our lean muscle mass in a noticeable way in just 2 weeks time?

    Quality time needed: 8 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 37 in our School of Fitness.
    Yes, it is once again time for you to put your thinking cap on before you proceed without hesitation through the hallway of healthy fit wonders and science :).
    You already know that keeping fit and lifting your weekly weights and doing your daily cardio is nothing but a rejuvenating choice. It's good for your strength, duh.. It is wondrously good for your harty heart health, and it aids your cognitive and creative processes. It scientifically speaking lowers depression and tardy drowsiness. And if you have been keeping up with me over the years, you also know that keeping fit on a regular weekly basis also lowers your physical age by quite a noticeable margin too.
    But even small ordinary things like taking a daily walk carries with it a huge life long health and fitness impact.

    My Question:.
    What happens with our skeletal lean muscle mass for people above 70 years of age if they take a few thousand steps more or less per day for 2 weeks time?.
    Read on to reveal just how big the impact of that tiny change can be below the break.

  • Fitness School, Question 36, Will lifting weights 1-3 days per week be enough to lower cardiovascular related mortality?.

    Quality time needed: 3 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 36 in our School of Fitness.
    All forms of fitness activity is a tiny little pill of good health no matter who you are.
    But is the simple act of lifting weights one to three days per week enough to substantially lower the risk of cardiovascular related mortality?.
    Yup, that is how easy and straightforward question number 36 turned out to be. And why? Because we have a brand new study to lean back on when it comes down to the (obvious) answer.
    Read on to reveal the complete Q and A below the break.

  • Going beyond 1.5C. Our world and daily life behind the IPCC report.

    Quality time needed: 27 minutes


    Cause & Consequence.

    Life on Earth laid bare by the IPCC report.



    But before we head on over to the meaty real life data of our reckless modern day life, which the 2018 IPCC report painfully laid bare, walk with me as I step out on frosty cold northern shores for my morning walk.

    Just a Thursday, spent on northern shores.
    And this is the way I started this gorgeous little Autumn day.

  • Roundabouts in the milky way galaxy. The duality of a sustainable earth, and interplanetary living.

    Quality time needed: 14 minutes


    Walking through the gates of autumn.

    We see a brand new dawn.



    Life itself is this majestic mirror world of brilliance and incompetence. Eternally merging and reflected, individually disengaged yet perfectly synchronized and attached to each other and everything else.

    Like the leaf that finds itself stranded on the wayward peaks of a stormy ocean. They are each others counterpart, yet entirely different. Individual objects, entwined and interconnected. Disengaged and perfectly unique.

  • Into Autumn, the spider´s lullaby. Random thoughts on life from another gorgeous day.

    Quality time needed: 5 minutes


    Walking through the gates of autumn.

    Together with a tiny little spider.



    And today, there´s officially a full-blown Autumn song playing out there in nature. Gorgeous and sunny, on a Sunday =). Wind free, except for the tiniest of breeze that you can almost not see or feel as it slowly makes it way through the crown of leaves that towers above.

    But it is, none the less, Autumn.
    The colors of the trees reveal it. The pale blue September moon that hangs high up in the middle of the day is another telltale.

  • The anatomy and fitness function of our gorgeous human ass ( The mighty three we call the Gluteus ).

    Quality time needed: 9 minutes


    The gorgeous strength of Gluteus Maximus, Medius and Minimus.

    The science of health and fitness should always be your lifelong guide.



    Fitness is as wonderful for your health as it is for landing you a more sculpted and capable body over time.
    But that will never change that even fit people (quite a lot of them) are doing the right things for the wrong reasons. Case in point the fit and good looking girl you can see in the IG video I am linking to, she obviously trains hard and regular while being in great shape, and she does know quite a few things about the body and the science of staying healthy and fit.
    Which is wonderful on all counts.
    But like so many other gym goers she is seemingly misinformed about a few things too ( on the other hand, so are we all :P ). Allowing wrongful information and knowledge to shape her choices and the choices of other people that gulps up everything we fit people believe to be true. However, if you are willing to listen to it the beautiful science of health and fitness will guide you towards a better body and better health and better workouts if you pay attention to real fitness science instead of personal opinions. You see, there is nothing wrong with the exercises she is doing. But outside of the wonderful world of human anatomy, there is no such thing as an upper or lower butt muscle as far as your exterior appearance goes, nor is there a meaningful difference as far as your practical fitness capacity and workout goes.

    Click through and let us talk about Gluteus Maximus, Medius and Minimus.

  • Earth over shoot day is one of many events and situations during the year that signals the mindless gluttony of our evolving hybrid species.

    Quality time needed: 8 minutes


    Planet Earth - studies & life in the Anthropocene.

    A new way of life is needed.



    But what is it exactly? And why is something that sounds so cute something truly terrible that we need to take seriously as a global whole.
    To most people, it is more than likely just another ridiculous phrase keyboard warriors throw around once a year while they too waste this world to the point of no return.
    But this ever-moving yearly event day is anything but deadly essential.

    Every year this day signals the point in that year where we have used up all the naturally replenishing resources of this planet.
    And beyond this point, the planet is losing its inventory for the next year(s) ahead and it's capacity to restock.

    Which if we are talking about corporations and business leaders is something that would cause pretty much every corporate leader out there to die from a heart attack if it persistently happened to their business. But when its Earth, people just shrug their mindless shoulders and look the other way as if the greenhouse we are subsisting in isn't the singular thing that feeds and house us all.

  • Fitness facts: How and why does the range of motion in any given strength exercise matter?.

    Quality time needed: 10 minutes


    Diving down into a range of motion and squat study.

    The science of health and fitness should always be your gym guide.



    Right now, if you enter any given gym, the wonderful world of barbells will conjure up as many opinions as there are fitness girls on Instagram, no matter the subject.
    And plenty of opinions are exactly that, personal opinions, formed by peer pressure in the gym, on social media, or by fit vixens looking to make a bigger following by posting daily stuff which may or may not be factually correct.

    There are out of date school gym coaches still living in the past, badly informed parents, friends, big brothers, big sisters, commercial interests only looking out for the next conference call, as well as uninformed writers working for big tabloids which just happened to draw the assignment to make a puff piece on fitness.

    So let us instead look at science and what it actually has to teach us about the range of motion for any particular exercise. And for the purpose of this article, let us focus on a Squat centric use case since legs and ass are thankfully all the rage anyway :).

  • Moments from the Anthropocene, the fox and my morning coffee.

    Quality time needed: 6 minutes


    The scent of black coffee.

    And wild breakfast companions.



    'Today' (another today ) while enjoying my first cup of coffee standing outside on my sun-drenched porch, I could hear something sneakily make its way through the underbrush and thick tall grass and florals that intermix with the deep dark, and thankfully, untouched old forest at the edge of my property.

    Fast forward just a little bit and I could start to see the movement in the thin youngling trees and the tall flowers. Something was out there, touching here and there making the wild plants and florals sway as it drew nearer me.

  • The savagery that is the carnivore dietary plan vs the science of health and fitness.

    Quality time needed: 15 minutes


    The error of your way.

    Could be spelled 'the carnivore diet'..



    A growing number of people in the world adopt healthy, fit living by going increasingly more vegetarian for a long range of personal reasons and or due to scientific reasons. Some of those reasons often include the substantial increase in cancer and diabetes risk that eating red meat and highly processed foods causes, or the impossible mathematics behind an entire world eating ever higher amounts of meat, or the incredible amount of pollution that animal food production causes.

    And facts are, that all those reasons are equally good, sound and true, so it does not even matter why you do it. It is a good and healthy choice to eat less red meat, and by doing so you will contribute towards a healthier you, and a healthier world.

  • Anthropocene: 12 vaquitas left in the world before they too face the ultimate end of line which is called extinction.

    Quality time needed: 5 minutes


    The vaquitas are sadly not alone.

    This is the Lost World of Planet Earth.



    Around the world, the vaquitas are sadly not alone, there are countless of animal species, plants and all that´s facing the threat of extinction in ever greater numbers. And the pace is accelerating, so it´s not business as usual.
    Worse, this is all down to man-made issues.
    It got nothing to do with prey and predatory fluctuations. And it got nothing to do with natural events and Earths naturally changing cycles.

  • Let us talk about the concept of 'Half Earth' and why both Dr Cristiana Pașca Palmer, UN and I share the opinion that it is all about 'Whole Earth'.

    Quality time needed: 7 minutes


    People & Planet is just a mutual ecosystem.

    The Lost World.



    A long and well established connective tissue in the way I talk and write, and think about health & fitness is that we are all connected through this global ecosystem we all share.
    Which is why I have over the years pointed out that living in a sustainable way is ultimately all about health. Individual health & planetary health. People that are opting to eat shit just isn't healthy.
    Neither from a planetary or individual perspective.

    Just as how healthy fit people that´s living unsustainable, just isn't healthy living people either.

  • Fitness School, Question 35, Let us dig deep down into 'standing barbell row' and the complete amount of muscles it will engage and activate.

    Quality time needed: 3 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 35 in our School of Fitness.
    Once we venture beyond the glorious realms of leg and glutes training, there is the never-ending hallway of kicking and boxing to explore and conquer.
    But what else lies beyond the joy of those fit & healthy cornerstones?.
    Well, if it was not obvious so far in life, martial arts and legs and glutes have their equal in the colossus that is weighted back training.
    And when it comes down to weighted back training, actually, when it comes down to working the upper body at all, there is one exercise which I will never hesitate to put front and center (together with deadlift), and that is 'Standing Barbell Row'.
    Here is my question:
    Standing Barbell Row will challenge and work you from top to toe.
    But can you list all of the muscles which you will activate when you do this bad boy in a properly challenging way?.

  • The things we see in the rearview mirror, the world meat free week, and Scandinavian winter scenes.

    Quality time needed: 6 minutes


    Views we catch in the rear view mirror as we leave #worldmeatfreeweek behind us.

    The Lost World.



    Good and healthy vegetarian food is able to provide health & fitness improving nutrition for far more people, despite polluting much less and using up a lot less landmass vied towards animal farming.
    And you can quote me on that because that simple statement is 100% based on science & clear-cut facts instead of peoples personal opinions and conjecture.

    In fact, food production from animal farming is already using up 83% of our global agricultural land. Yet, it is only managing to deliver about 18% of the calories we consume. And does that situation not sound completely unsustainable and fool-hearted to maintain?.

  • Fitness School, Question 34, Is there a connection between weighted leg and glute training and your brain maintaining a healthy neurological cell production?

    Quality time needed: 4 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 34 in our School of Fitness.
    Yes, we absolutely love our leg and glute day. The challenge it provides is a huge mountain of fun to climb every single week.
    But, did you know that you are not just strengthening your lower body when you are building stronger legs, ass, and hips?. Of course, you do. You know damn well that those leg days are crucial for the health and wellness of your lower back and abs too. And it sure does tax your heart and metabolic functions too. However, let us go upstairs towards our brainy area with this question.
    Here is my question:
    Is it true that weighted exercises in the gym for your leg and glutes will increase the production of healthy neural cells? ( which are crucial for the capacity and health of our brain and entire nervous system )

  • The Lost World XVIII and the enemy of all things living. #Connect2Earth

    Quality time needed: 9 minutes


    This is the lost world XVIII.
    And how life in the Anthropocene is the tale about the enemy of all things living.
    Healthy living is nothing but the science of life.



    With the rising tide of the Baltic sea far beneath me, I towered the surrounding world.
    Looking out from the crest of the Scandinavian coastline. This was still a place lost in time and mist. A mountain entirely dressed in green and trees, moss and berries, sand and soil, and it is, as much a mountainous castle growing ever taller as it is the place where salt and cold black water comes crashing in to embrace the land of the Vikings.

  • May 22 mark the crucial 'day of biological diversity'. But it is also so much more than that, #Connect2Earth.

    Quality time needed: 9 minutes


    At the crossroads of the Anthropocene.
    May 22 is 'The International Day of Biological Diversity'.
    A day which, is by now, our essential every day reality.



    May 22 is both a perfectly ordinary Tuesday in your life and the global 'International Day for Biological Diversity'.
    But that is not all this week is all about. We also have the endangered wildlife day, which happened on May 18, and birthday number 70 for IUCN. And, as such this entire week represents an opportunity for each of us to make it a healthy fit day for the entire planet and our individual self.


    Also, if you are present in the incredibly lush and beautiful high coast area of Scandinavia, Sweden next Tuesday you are more than welcome to join me and my coworker from Scandinavian.Fitness for a sweaty fit workout at the gym, lifting weights and grunting at Friskis, Örnsköldsvik at 0730. Once we are done at the gym, we will head outside for a walk at 0830 and hopefully enjoy beautiful weather together with the pristine nature of Scandinavia.

  • Fitness School, Question 33, Let us talk about that mighty beast called the Quadriceps.

    Quality time needed: 4 minutes


    Fitness School
    Do you know the right answer?.



    Question number 33 in our School of Fitness.
    Legs and ass and back. That is the holy trinity ( together with the fourth pillar, our abs ) of building a strong and capable and athletic body.
    But what about the makeup of our upper legs?
    We have the backside of our legs, which we call the hamstrings, and on the front, there´s the thing most people simply call the quads.
    But let us dig deeper down into those mighty looking quadriceps and the rest of the anterior side of our legs.
    Here is my question:
    Can you specify which muscles make up the bulk of what we call our quadriceps and anterior leg muscles?.

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