We Shall Overcome

I caught myself singing something really weird today.  The words went like these:

We shall overcome
We shall overcome
We shall overcome some day

I then realized that I have absolutely no idea what that is and where do I know it from.  Wikipedia to the rescue.  Apparently, these are the lyrics from the “We Shall Overcome” song.

“We Shall Overcome” is a protest song that became a key anthem of the African-American Civil Rights Movement (1955–1968). The title and structure of the song are derived from an early gospel song, “I’ll Overcome Someday”, by African-American composer Charles Albert Tindley. The song was published in 1947 as “We Will Overcome” in the People’s Songs Bulletin


The song became associated with the Civil Rights movement from 1959, when Guy Carawan stepped in as song leader at Highlander, which was then focussed on non-violent civil rights activism. It quickly became the movement’s unofficial anthem. Seeger and other famous folksingers in the early 1960s, such as Joan Baez, sang the song at rallies, folk festivals, and concerts in the North and helped make it widely known. Since its rise to prominence, the song, and songs based on it, have been used in a variety of protests worldwide.

That is very helpful.  Yet it still doesn’t explain where I know it from.  I guess it might have been used as background music in a movie that I’ve seen or something like that.  Because I really doubt that it would resurface from my high school memories, when I learned tonnes of weird stuff.


I met my yachting coach today.

I don’t remember if I blogged about it, so I’ll mention it here. I used to do a lot of sailing back when I was a kid. I never got up to a professional level, but never-the-less I got good enough to participate in a few competitions here and there.

I almost forgot (until today that is) that yachting was a big part of my life a few years ago. There were summers when I spent entire days in the club.

It was fun. It was a perfect mix of physical training, water sports, and social life. And, of course, the good part of it all being fun was due to my coach.

Continue reading Coach

Passing the vision test

Few years ago, when I was in high school, I had a classmate who was wearing this really thick glasses. His vision was terrible. But every time he was passing the vision test, he scored the most points. I was wondering how he was doing it, since he could see practically nothing.

The trick was simple.

Back than vision tests were done using Sivcev’s tables. The most common Sivcev table is a poster with rows of random latters. The top row has two letters in biggest font. Next row has three letters in smaller font, and so on. Reading letters from a certain distance can suggest how good a person can see.

The guy just had the whole table memorized. Yes, that’s true. He knew all the letters in all the rows and could spell of them back and forward and as you wish. I thought it was close to impossible at the time.