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This army included such great heroes as wily Odysseus, Nestor, and Achilles, whose inclusion as part of the martial force leads us to Bad Idea 2: Be careful what you choose; you will have to live even after death with the consequences. According to legend and myth, the gods had offered Achilles he of the legendary heel a choice -- he could live a long but ordinary life or he could live a short but heroic-unto-legend-worthy life. He chose the latter, and indeed acquitted himself exceptionally during the siege of Troy, and as a result died quite heroically in battle. It is accurate to note that he eventually had second thoughts on this choice as revealed in a passage of The Odyssey, where he is encountered in the Land of the Dead and pretty much admits his regrets.

The battle rages for nine years as the Trojans had more than a few heroes of their own such as Hector and his sons. Moreover, the city itself was well fortified with an enclosing wall that proved to be impenetrable from forces on the outside.

You Did What?: Mad Plans And Incredible Mistakes

As a result, after much hooting and hollering and laying to waste of the surrounding area, when all was said and done the Trojans and Helen were still safe and snug behind their city wall. According to the myths the prophetess Cassandra was blessed with clairvoyant foresight and cursed with an aura that made those around her disbelieve anything she had to say.

Cassandra warned Hector and the Trojans that a plot to defeat Troy was afoot, and if it went forward, Troy would indeed fall. The Greeks realized that they were getting nowhere so wily Odysseus decided that it was time to change tactics. The Greeks had left behind a large wooden horse as a token of their esteem for so many years of good fighting; or, as said by sniveling Sinon, their left-behind spokesperson, "You won.

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We lost. Take this horse as the prize. The Trojans dragged the horse into the city of Troy, inside her protective walls, which had so successfully withstood the Greeks. Sure enough, night fell, a commando force dropped out of the horse and opened the gates from inside to allow in the now returned Greek armies.

You Did What?: Mad Plans and Great Historical Disasters

From kings to corporate leaders, from captains to presidents, no one is immune to bad decisi History has never been more fun than it is in this fact-filled compendium of historical fiascoes and embarrassingly bad ideas. From kings to corporate leaders, from captains to presidents, no one is immune to bad decisions and their lasting legacy.

The fiascoes that litter our history are innumerable This witty collection of historical mayhem chronicles unwise decisions from ancient Greece to modern-day Hollywood and everything in between. Learn such lessons as: Never trust Greeks bearing gifts of large wooden horses. Avoid building elementary schools on toxic waste dumps, even those with sweet monikers like Love Canal.

Rabbits multiply like rabbits Down Under. Even if you use brightly colored paint on the boats, it's quite easy to misplace an entire country's navy.


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With more than forty-five chapters of mind-boggling flubs and follies, fans of history, trivia, and those who just want a good laugh will adore this intriguing and fun read. Get A Copy.

Epub You Did What Mad Plans And Incredible Mistakes

Paperback , pages. Published August 17th by William Morrow Paperbacks. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 6.


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    Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Sep 18, Jason rated it it was ok. So this is one of those books you'd probably never read on an airplane, but it makes for great toilet perusal. It's more or less a series of 3 to 5 page overviews of some of history's great foul-ups, missteps, and general bunglings, from the Trojan War to new Coke. View 1 comment. Apr 19, P Dreadful rated it liked it Shelves: historical-humour. It was not as funny as I had hoped it would be.

    Nevertheless, it is a well-researched piece and is extremely informative. For instance, it took more than 40 seconds for Titanic's crew to steer its starboard side away from the iceberg because it was cruising at a speed of 21 knots. In another instance, it was Thomas Austin's desire to hunt rabbits that gave rise to the Australian rabbit disaster.

    Moreover, the topics selected were quite diverse - from Trojan horse to Idi Amin's rule - it covers p It was not as funny as I had hoped it would be. Moreover, the topics selected were quite diverse - from Trojan horse to Idi Amin's rule - it covers pretty much all the great follies in between. Jun 27, Greg rated it it was ok Shelves: historical. As with many books of this type, the spice is in the title, not the content. There really wasn't anything that was shocking, surprising, or really interesting for that matter, in this book.

    Each piece was rather short, just a couple of pages, and was jammed with so many details and names that the main point was lost. Many of the stories probably could have been a book of their own at least a hefty chapter. If there had been more focus in each piece, the book might have been better, but as it i As with many books of this type, the spice is in the title, not the content. If there had been more focus in each piece, the book might have been better, but as it is, I would not recommend this title. Jan 31, Chris rated it liked it Shelves: history. This is a fun book, even though it's not really new.

    It plots some of the great errors in history, from the Trojan Horse to New Coke, occasionally meditating on the effects of those errors. For example, was the Russian Revolution given an assist by a young Winston Churchill? And why on Earth didn't Nixon burn the tapes?

    The chapters are short, and most of the stories are familiar, from William Harrison's rej Ahhh The chapters are short, and most of the stories are familiar, from William Harrison's rejection of a topcoat to the careless captaining of the Titanic. Nov 27, Dj rated it really liked it.

    An interesting look at things that have gone wrong throughout history. The Editor picks some really choice examples of things just going wrong due to poor decisions. There are some obvious ones of course. Like the Titanic. But there are others that are much more insightful. Like Napoleon's choice of who he left in command of Paris and who he took to Waterloo.

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    Some of the stuff in this book is probably something that is known by the reader, but since it has so much to offer there is sure to be so An interesting look at things that have gone wrong throughout history. Some of the stuff in this book is probably something that is known by the reader, but since it has so much to offer there is sure to be something that is new. Maybe not eye opening, but new. A nice change of pace book. Meh, this book tried to be quirky and fun but it wasn't anything special. Most of the stories and events described in the book weren't that interesting and the writing whasn't that funny but rather messy.

    Jan 02, Dave rated it really liked it. A good book in this line of things, some tales I already knew but a lot unknow to me. I would recommend this book.

    You Did What?: Mad Plans and Incredible Mistakes - Bill Fawcett - Google Книги

    Jun 28, Sharon rated it it was ok Shelves: non-fiction. This book is kind of a mixed bag. Most sections are by different authors, some more entertaining than others. I found I already knew a fair amount of the anecdotes from high school history courses. I was pretty disappointed in the "Africa" section. While most other stories were presented regardless of what country they took place in, Africa - a continent - was presented as one single entity with various weird stories mostly from the 20th century.

    I felt like there were some of those passages that This book is kind of a mixed bag. I felt like there were some of those passages that merited their own sections and at least the same treatment as a story from Europe or America. It semmed kind of belittling. May 06, Martin Willoughby rated it liked it.

    If you don't know much history this is good. If you do, it's a very quick read. Jul 05, David Sarkies rated it it was ok Recommends it for: People who like these books.