The books of architecture by Vitruvius in classical antiquity really cast a light on how they built things to last, and why some of the buildings in the Roman forum are still standing, even with several tons of stone supported for thousands of years. I also think those Seven-Eleven convenience stores on the Appian Way will be there forever because of this.
In Book 7 chapter 1, Vitruvius covers the proper way to lay down a pavement or foundation. First, they hammered the soil down to compact it tighter than your glutes after an hour of squats, and then set a layer of logs on the ground on top of that. Next, at least six inches of stone were set down on the logs, followed by 12 inches of the smaller stone cemented together with lime which was compacted by beating it with wood.
But that's not all... Then an upper layer of another 6 inches, this time more rich in lime, was set with stones and leveled off. Finally the slab pieces or mosaic tessarae were mortared on to that. So back in the day, they used 2/3 meter thick foundations. Very impressive, much more thick and longer lasting than the foundations of today.
And now for something completely different, OtherWorldlyOne (warning, a bit salty sometimes) picked me for another one of those questiony things. I like her comments and blog, so who am I to turn that down? Feel free to do this one if you like.
So here are ten things not previously published about me (that I'm aware of).
- On the piano, I can pick out a note I hear in the first try, but it's always exactly 1 and 1/2 steps off. I blame years of playing the trumpet, which is a B flat instrument to the piano's key of C.
- The tops of my feet have absolutely no hair.
- I've never had a tattoo or piercing of any kind, and never felt the need to get one.
- I karaoke sometimes, but unfortunately I sound similar to Billy Joel.
- As a kid, I always wanted to play hockey, but there was not much ice in Texas so I couldn't.
- I was blessed with an unnaturally good sense of balance and can still do an unhealthy amount of skateboarding tricks including multiple 360s.
- When I make margaritas, they always use small amounts of Cointreau and pineapple juice, and are always on the rocks because frozen is just not the way to go.
- I have never been to South America, even though boat chartering is less expensive there. At some point, I want to go hiking to see Machu Picchu.
- I used to be able to throw a really wicked baseball breaking pitch, but haven't tried in a while.
- When I was 12 years old, I took the SAT (college admissions test) because Duke University wanted me to.
So there you have it!
Have a great weekend all, I'll be working the marble and studying the Italian if you know what I mean...