“Apart from that, we had books. He would spin through as many as three a day, sometimes reading while he stood almost at attention but rocking slightly on his heels. I read his books after he finished them, and was quite likely the only ten-year-old at my two-room school in Buckhorn, Ontario, who could speak knowledgeably about the sexual services offered beneath the Roman Forum during gladiatorial matches, the operation of fuselage-mounted machine guns on World War I aircraft, the superhuman endurance of First Nations runners, and British naval tactics against the Spanish Armada.”

From the Walrus (“The Missing Piece”, by Terence Byrnes).

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