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David IV the Builder or the Restorer (also known as Davit IV Aghmashenebeli) was the king of Georgia from 1089 to 1125 CE. His long reign was marked by a substantial revival of medieval Georgia, he regained much of Georgia's lost territory and controlled a realm stretching from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea at his death. David's religious, military, and cultural reforms stabilized domestic life in Georgia and established the monastery of Gelati as a major cultural center. It was under David IV that Georgia was unified for the first time in centuries.
Chaos in Georgia
David inherited a realm that was rapidly falling apart. His father, George II of Georgia (or Giorgi II, r. 1072-1089 CE), was besieged by both internal rebellion and Muslim encroachment. The powerful Baghvash family rebelled repeatedly and other noble families tried to pull away from the center.
At the same time, the Seljuk Turks under Malik Shah (r. 1072-1092 CE), taking advantage of the Byzantine disintegration in Asia Minor, invaded in force in 1077 CE, sacking the major cities of Tbilisi and Erzurum and capturing the royal treasury. Annual Seljuk raids devastated Georgia; peasants were carried off as booty, and the Georgian capital of Kutaisi was looted. The Chronicle of David IV states that “here was no more sowing and harvesting in these lands; the forests crept back, and wild beasts and critters in the fields took the place of men” (Metreveli 171). George attempted to staunch the raids by agreeing to pay tribute and provide military service to Malik Shah, but this did little good since the Turkish raiders often operated outside of Malik Shah's control. George attempted to conquer Kakhetia with Malik Shah's support, but when Malik Shah decided to support the Kakhetians instead, the invasion turned into a rout.
Ascension of David IV
David's early years benefitted both from luck and planning. First, David threw away the Byzantine court titles that his ancestors had held and used for centuries. While Georgia had been de facto independent since at least the early 1000s CE if not earlier, the usage of the Byzantine court titles magistros, kouropalates, and nobilissimus implied fealty to the Byzantine emperor. By rejecting these titles, David was proclaiming clear independence for Georgia.
Next, David decided to pay off the Seljuks, which put an end to the Seljuk raids for much of the 1090s CE, allowing Georgians to return to rebuild towns and tend their fields. This helped stabilize the realm. In 1092 CE, the Seljuk vizier Nizam al-Mulk was assassinated by the Assassins and Malik Shah died that same year, severely diluting Seljuk strength. In 1095 CE, the First Crusade was called, and when crusaders started reaching the Middle East in 1097 CE, the Muslim enemies of Georgia to the south had to turn their attention to the crusading threat and ignore affairs in the Caucasus. This allowed David to cut off tribute to the Seljuks in 1099 CE, investing this money in the army and infrastructure instead.
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Perhaps David's greatest early accomplishment, however, was reigning in the power of the nobles. He called out plots by the powerful duke Liparit Baghvash, initially forgiving him, but later exiling him to Constantinople. He then created the mstovarni, the king's secret police. This allowed him to foresee plots, and the plotters were often brutally punished with disfigurement or execution. When Liparit's son, Rati, died in 1103 CE, the Baghvash possessions of Kldekari and Trialeti were forfeited to the crown. This summary disposal of the once-powerful Baghvash family chilled independent streaks in other Georgian nobles.
Even before the onslaught of the Seljuks, the kingdom of Kakhetia had remained outside of Georgian control. David decided to invade in 1103 CE, and entered unopposed; the king was a young inexperienced ruler, Aghsartan II, who was given over to David by the Kakhetian nobles. Some nobles did try to resist and called on the Muslim ruler of Ganja to help. The Kakhetian and Ganjan forces were routed at the Battle of Ertsukhi, and by 1105 CE, Georgia was reunited for the first time in centuries. Kakhetia was a wealthy land, and it had avoided Turkish raids through a treaty with the Seljuks. This added wealth helped Georgia continue to develop infrastructure and rebuild fortifications.
David formed a standing Georgian army loyal to him alone. According to one estimate, it may have been as large as 40,000 men, including an elite guard unit. David also instituted a strict discipline system for the army; it would be paid a salary rather than depend on loot, and swearing or rogue behavior would be disciplined.
With a distracted Muslim world and new resources to improve his army, David had Georgian forces clear the remaining Turkish settlers and soldiers out of Georgia. In 1110 CE, the strategic town of Shamshvilde fell to the Georgians. David's forces crushed a Muslim army sent in retaliation. In 1115 CE, Georgian forces recaptured the city of Rustavi, cutting off Tbilisi from the Muslim east. Ossetia acknowledged Georgian suzerainty, as did the Chechens for a time. The Muslim states began to fear David's power and a combined Muslim force marched to Tbilisi. At the Battle of Didgori in 1121 CE, David crushed the combined Muslim forces. In 1122 CE, Tbilisi was recaptured and was declared Georgia's capital once again. In 1123 CE, David captured half of the Emirate of Shirvan and, in 1124 CE, he took the important Caspian Sea port of Derbent. Perhaps even more impressive, that same year the Armenian citizens of Ani, Armenia's former capital but now ruled by the Turks, called on David to liberate them. After a brief siege, Ani fell and David was declared king of the Armenians and all of Georgia. Muslim power in the Caucasus was destroyed. Georgian territory stretched across the Caucasus from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea.
In addition to military successes, David also aimed to reform the state. He was known as a precocious king and even took his library with him on military campaigns. David took a strong interest in bettering Georgian society and instituted reforms in the medieval church and law.
The Georgian Church suffered from nepotism by the nobility, who promoted their underage and often unqualified sons to influential positions in the church hierarchy. Their behavior included sanctioning illegal marriages and sodomy. All of these practices were condemned by the Ruisi synod in 1104 CE, which also set minimum age and qualification requirements for ecclesiastical positions and laid out uniform church practice for all of the churches in Georgia. Separately, David unified the positions of the bishop of Chqondidi and chief secretary, thus imposing royal control over the church. He also founded the monastery of Gelati, which became a major source of Georgian intellectual life, as well as the resting place of Georgian kings. Gelati's prestige was raised by the addition of returning Georgian monks from the Middle East, who were not being tolerantly treated by the crusaders.
Later in his reign, David hosted a synod that attempted to reconcile the Armenian monophysite and the Georgian dyophysite Christians. While this synod was much less successful than the first, David practiced religious tolerance towards the Armenian Christians, which helped preserve Georgian rule over its new Armenian territories.
In governance, David established government offices and a court of appeals to hear Georgians' petitions. This allowed even the most marginalized in the population, such as widows and orphans, to have access to royal justice. He was also magnanimous to immigrants; he settled several thousand Qipchaq families that were rejected by the Kievan Rus in Georgia, which gave him a valuable military force as well. However, there were trust issues with the Qipchaqs, and both the crown and the Georgian populace were wary about allowing them too many privileges. They assimilated into Georgian life in the coming decades.
Foreign Influences & Foreign Affairs
In foreign affairs, David created alliances by practicing marriage diplomacy. David married his daughter Tamar to Manuchehr III (r. 1120-1160 CE), the future emir of Shirvan. He supposedly married his daughter Kata to Isaac Komnenos, the son of Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenos (r. 1081-1118 CE). He married his third daughter Rusudan to the heir to the Ossetian throne. He himself married Gurandukht (after divorcing his first wife, also called Rusudan), daughter of the Qipchaq chieftain, to cement his alliance with his new Qipchaq subjects. Through his careful planning, David had created a marriage network throughout the region.
The establishment of the monastery at Gelati spurred learning and the recording of medieval literature and history. At this same time, having absorbed Muslim territories and with close ties with Shirvan, Georgia started to absorb influences from Persian culture. While Byzantine culture remained strong, Persian works were translated into Georgian, and the works of Georgian historians began to reflect certain Persian stylistic norms. Persian words entered the Georgian vernacular. Even Persian courtly values of chivalry began to become popular in the Georgian court.
A Georgian Legacy
When David died in 1125 CE, he was buried in the Gelati monastery, which he had built. His heir, Demetrius I of Georgia (or Demetre I, r. 1125-1156 CE), inherited a powerful realm that dominated the Caucasus, was culturally rich and the rival of any of its neighbors. This was certainly a much-improved position on what David's own father, George II, had left him.
The main dark stain on David's legacy was his two marriages: Demetrius was the son of his first wife, Rusudan, while his surviving second wife, Gurandukht, had her own son by David, Vakhtang. Both surviving versions of David's will implore Demetrius to care for his brother and imply that the royal crown might pass to him in the future. This would lead to internecine strife between the two branches of the family over the next two generations, but ultimately Georgia would remain a powerful medieval state for the next century.
The Founding Families of Bernards Township (Basking Ridge)
History showcases some of the greatest reminders of where we came from. Many people new to the area don’t know the deep history in the area ties back to some of the originating families that chose this area back in the early 1700s. As many know, the area was purchased by John Harrison, agent of King James III of England in 1717, from Chief Nowenoik of the Lenapes, a real estate package of 3,000 acres for $50. We honor those who founded this community on the Ridge.
Louis Alexandre Berthier (a French military engineer) created this map in 1781 is one of the earliest found showcasing early Liberty Corner and Basking Ridge. Bullion’s Tavern (Liberty Corner) was actually Annin’s Corner prior to the War. On the left traveling east on Lyons Road to Maple Ave, past Lord Stirling’s manor, up North Finley to the Basking Ridge Church then back onto N. Maple Ave. to the Ayres Mill (Van Dorn Mill). Source: Washington Rochambeau Revolutionary Route
Starting with the construction of the Newtown & Llanidloes Railway in 1859, he became involved in the construction of a number of railways in mid-Wales, the Vale of Clwyd and Pembrokeshire.
His greatest achievement as a railway engineer was the great Talerddig cutting on the Newtown & Machynlleth Railway, completed in 1862 and the deepest in the world at that time.
Not all the ventures in which Davies was involved succeeded &mdash the grandly named Manchester & Milford Railway reached neither destination!
The Struggle to Become David Reimer
In Memory of David Reimer/Facebook Despite his tumultuous life, David Reimer found love with his wife Jane.
Upon John Money’s recommendation, Bruce Reimer began life as Brenda Reimer.
In addition to his sex reassignment surgery, Reimer was given estrogen supplements to help “feminize” his body. The Reimers returned to Money’s office every year so that the doctor could monitor both Brian and Brenda’s growth as a boy and a girl. The radical study became known as the John/Joan case.
Money noted that the twin sister, a.k.a. Brenda, was “much neater” than her twin brother Brian. Money also noted that Brenda was the more stubborn and dominant personality, which he dismissed as “tomboy traits.”
In 1975, when the twins turned nine, Money published his study in a book called Sexual Signatures where he described Reimer’s forced transition to Brenda as a success:
“The girl already preferred dresses to pants enjoyed wearing her hair ribbons, bracelets, and frilly blouses, and loved being her daddy’s little sweetheart. Throughout childhood, her stubbornness and the abundant physical energy she shares with her twin brother and expends freely have made her a tomboyish girl, but nonetheless a girl.”
But nothing could be further from the truth. Indeed, Reimer recalled his childhood as far more distressing.
“I never quite fit in,” David Reimer said in a 2000 interview on Oprah. “Building forts and getting into the odd fistfight, climbing trees — that’s the kind of stuff that I liked, but it was unacceptable as a girl.”
According to author John Colapinto who worked with Reimer on his book As Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as A Girl, the frequent visits Reimer made to Money’s office were also traumatic.
Reimer was shown pictures of naked adults to “reinforce Brenda’s gender identity” and pressed by Money to endure more surgeries that would make him more feminine. Both of the twins would later accuse Money of making them pose in various sexual positions which, according to Money, was just another element of his theory that involved “sexual rehearsal play.”
Janet Reimer reportedly wasn’t blind to her child’s discomfort with his female gender identity, either. She recalled the first time that Reimer was put in a dress he angrily tore it off. “There were doubts along the way,” Janet confessed on Oprah. “But I couldn’t afford to contemplate them because I couldn’t afford to be wrong.”
Problems at home extended to school. Reimer was teased by classmates for his “masculine gait” and his standing to pee in the girl’s bathroom. When Reimer complained about feeling like a boy, his parents and other adults convinced him that it was just a phase.
Reimer’s secret disrupted the family. His father sunk into alcoholism and his mother attempted suicide. Reimer’s twin sibling, Brian, later descended into substance abuse and petty crime.
It wasn’t until the twins entered their teens that other doctors convinced the Reimers that it was time to tell their children the truth. After picking up Brenda from a psychologist appointment in 1980, Ron Reimer drove both his children to an ice cream parlor where he told them the whole story.
“Suddenly it all made sense why I felt the way I did,” Reimer said of the revelation. “I wasn’t some sort of weirdo. I wasn’t crazy.”
The Rockefellers: The Legacy Of History's Richest Man
The Rockefeller legacy began with a 16-year-old bookkeeper in Cleveland, Ohio, whose greatest ambitions were to earn $100,000 and live 100 years. His formal business training included a ten-week class in accounting, as well as a con-artist father who was known to say, “I cheat my boys every chance I get. I want to make 'em sharp,” according to the biography John D. Rockefeller: Anointed with Oil.
That young man was John Davison Rockefeller in 1855, who in 25 years would become the wealthiest man of his time, and arguably the wealthiest in history, reigning over a monopoly that refined as much as 90 percent of America’s oil. His flagship company, Standard Oil, was broken up in 1911 by the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, but Rockefeller’s greatest legacy – his family – lives on, spanning more than 200 surviving individuals and possessing a collective net worth of about $10 billion, according to Forbes’ list of America’s wealthiest families.
From the Manhattan skyline to the Gulf Coast, the impact of the Rockefeller family is hard to miss. One of the most visible contributions was made by John D. Rockefeller himself, who founded the University of Chicago. Intending to create the first great Baptist university, Rockefeller gave the school $80 million, equal to more than $2 billion in today’s dollars. The monopolist’s son, John D. Rockefeller Jr., comes in a close second, constructing the Rockefeller Center, an expanse of 19 commercial skyscrapers in Midtown Manhattan.
Today, members of the family continue to preside over the so-called robber baron’s philanthropic flagship, the Rockefeller Foundation, which commands more than $3.5 billion. However, the Rockefeller's single most impactful legacy is not in the realm of philanthropy, but rather the world of business. After Standard Oil was broken up by the federal government, many of its spinoffs become today’s most powerful oil companies, including all or part of
Despite the family’s immense wealth, the Rockefellers no longer stand atop America’s financial hierarchy. At $10 billion, the family ranks 24th on Forbes’ list, a far cry from the heyday of John D. Rockefeller, who became the world’s first billionaire in 1916, a sum equal to $30 billion today, adjusted for inflation. In a sense, this underestimates the oil scion’s wealth. By the time Rockefeller died in 1937, his assets equaled 1.5% of America’s total economic output. To control an equivalent share today would require a net worth of about $340 billion dollars, more than four times that of Bill Gates, currently the world’s richest man.
The Rockefeller clan is as secretive as it is influential, and the majority of the family manages to skirt the public eye. Nonetheless, there are no shortage of Rockefellers whose standalone successes would make even the Gilded Age oil baron proud. The single wealthiest family member is David Rockefeller, who was CEO of Chase National Bank (now JPMorgan Chase) and commands a fortune that Forbes values at $3 billion. Politically well connected, Rockefeller was offered – and declined – roles as Secretary of the Treasury and Chairman of the Federal Reserve. He is perhaps most infamous for helping to precipitate the Iran hostage crisis by encouraging President Jimmy Carter to admit the Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, to the U.S. for hospital treatment.
Many others in the family also made substantial inroads in politics, collectively holding enough posts to rival another clan of American blue bloods, the Kennedys. The biggest political name in the family is that of the deceased Nelson Rockefeller, brother of David, who served as Vice President under Gerald Ford. Another of David’s brothers, Winthrop Aldrich Rockefeller, became the first Republican Governor of Arkansas since reconstruction. His son, Winthrop Paul Rockefeller, continued the family legacy by serving as the state’s Lieutenant Governor until his untimely death in 2006. The only living Rockefeller policymaker is Winthrop Paul’s cousin, John Davison Rockefeller IV, who currently serves as a U.S. Senator from West Virginia.
I discovered my interest in writing about financial markets while interning in the media relations department of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, where I wrote…
I discovered my interest in writing about financial markets while interning in the media relations department of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, where I wrote about some of the most compelling economic research and data of the day. I took a deeper dive during a two year stint writing for the Fox School of Business, as well as almost a year at The Philadelphia Business Journal. Most recently, I interned at Investment News, where I was given a crash course in the complexities of the financial markets. Now, I’m helping Forbes Magazine determine the net worth of some of the world’s richest people.
David Shearer dedicated his life to the manufacture of farm machinery but is usually remembered for the steam car that he built as a hobby in the late 1890s. He was born on 7th November 1850 in the Orkney Islands, Scotland, the son of stonemason and blacksmith Peter Shearer and his wife Mary (née Kirkness). In 1852 the family emigrated to South Australia aboard the Omega and settled in the Clare Valley. After leaving school, David and his brothers, William and John, took up blacksmithing as a trade, purchasing their own businesses.
David and John entered into a partnership in 1877, establishing an agricultural implement factory at Mannum which produced ploughs, harrows, wagons and general blacksmithing items. Their first wheat stripper was built in 1883 and on 28th February of that year David married Mary Elizabeth Williams their family consisted of two sons and a daughter. In 1888 John invented and patented wrought-steel ploughshares, which became a major product for the firm. He later visited the Meadows Steel Co. in England to obtain information about a particularly resilient form of steel and this subsequently became the back-bone of all future Shearer implements.
In the 1890s David Shearer designed and built a steam-driven car (or, as it was described at the time, a ‘horseless four-wheeled carriage’). According to the Chronicle, it had its first official road trial on the 5th June 1899. It could carry eight passengers and the running cost was estimated at less than a penny per mile for wood and water. Almost everything for the Shearer car was made at Mannum. David’s nephew, John Albert Shearer, built the motor, which was a twin-cylinder steam engine, developing 15 horse-power and propelling the car easily at 15 miles per hour. In 1900 David was invited to display the car at the Adelaide Chamber of Manufactures Exhibition. It was driven to Adelaide with John at the controls while David tended the boiler, with members of their families and the housekeeper as passengers. David travelled many miles in the car before retiring it to a shed at his factory. The engine and boiler were then removed and installed in the launch Keith until 1924 when David retrieved them with the intention of reconstructing the car with pneumatic tyres to see what effect it would have on its performance. The Shearer steam car was donated to the National Motor Museum at Birdwood in 1975 and, after full restoration by the Sporting Car Club of South Australia, has taken part in many veteran and vintage car rallies, including the famous ‘London to Brighton’.
The Shearers maintained a wharf on the banks of the River Murray for loading machinery onto paddle steamers for delivery to the railway at Murray Bridge. David gave evidence to the Commission on Railways in 1904 and to the Parliamentary committee in 1916 in support of a train line to Mannum, but to no avail. The railway never came. The manufacture of tillage and seeding implements was transferred to Kilkenny under the management of John in 1904, while David stayed at Mannum, concentrating on the manufacture of harvesting machinery. Their partnership was dissolved in 1910.
David Shearer was also interested in astronomy, constructing an observatory adjacent to his home, and was a keen artist, producing works in oils, water colours and crayons. He was a Freemason and an active member of the Mannum community, serving on the Council for forty years as a Councillor and at times Chairman. He was also a member of the local Institute Committee, Progress Association, Hospital Building Committee, Rowing Club and Rifle Club. He earned himself the title of ‘Mannum’s Grand Old Man’.
He died on 15th October 1936 and was buried at West Terrace Cemetery. He is commemorated by the David Shearer Sports Park at Mannum. His son Crawford succeeded him in the management of the firm and in 1972 the Mannum plant was taken over by Horwood Bagshaw.
David Barton Says The Criticism That He Misrepresents History Is ‘Fake News’
Right-wing political operative and Religious Right pseudo-historian David Barton appeared on the “Educate For Life with Kevin Conover” radio program last month, where he complained that accusations that he routinely misrepresents American history in order to promote his political agenda are “fake news.”
Barton said that too many people simply believe what they read or hear about him from critics, which he insisted is “illogical” since he owns a large collection of historical documents.
“Because of what I do, I’m a target for the left, big time,” Barton said. “They say, ‘Oh, you make up your history.’ Did anybody point out that I own 100,000 original documents and I’m simply holding the original? Do you think I forged George Washington’s letter?”
“I get all these hit articles all the time coming out on me,” he continued. “A real journalist will always call the subject and say, ‘Hey, what is your take on this?’ Well, they don’t do that any more today, they [just say], ‘I found all these articles about you online and this is news.’ No, that’s fake news, that’s exactly what fake news is.”
The irony, of course, is that Barton’s complaints are false, as journalists have contacted him and examined some of the claims that he makes and concluded that “not one of them checked out.”
On top of that, Barton’s possession of “original documents” is largely irrelevant, as one does not need to own an original draft of the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence or the Bible or various court decisions to see that the assertions that he makes about them are utterly and demonstrably false.
Dr. David E. Martin - Exposing Moderna the Star of Plandemic: Indoctornation Reveals the Truth
Until recently best known as the founder of M·CAM®, the international leader in innovation finance, trade, and intangible asset finance, David E. Martin is a modern day renaissance man, whose roles have included Professor, Lecturer, Chairman and CEO.
From the halls of parliament to HBO comedy and documentary films such as the internationally acclaimed and multi-awarded Patent Wars and Future Dreaming, Dr. Martin takes on some of the world’s most complex economic and social themes using solutions that he’s successfully deployed in his work with over 160 countries.
He recently appeared in Mikki Willis’ documentary, Plandemic: Indoctornation where he revealed the truth behind the vaccine agenda and how following the money had led him to a number of conclusions about what is really going on during the Coronavirus crisis.
With Plandemic: Indoctornation being viewed over 5.7 million times on the Digital Freedom Platform alone, David has become an important voice as part of informed discourse around Coronavirus and our response as a society, with his recent research continuing to focus on vaccines, patents and the role of companies such as Moderna.
David’s other work includes financial engineering and investment, public speaking and writing, he has also served as an advisor to numerous Central Banks, global economic forums, the World Bank and International Finance Corporation and national governments around the world.
He has been instrumental in rebuilding lives and livelihoods in post-conflict, post-colonial, and environmentally devastated regions of the world. He is the architect for the world’s first public equity quantitative market index based on human innovation.
Dr. Martin has publications in law, medicine, engineering, finance, and education. He maintains active research in the fields of linguistic genomics, fractal financial-risk modelling, and cellular membrane ionic signaling. In a televised speech in 2006, David correctly forecast the U.S. housing financial crisis and identified it as a catalyst for the 2008 Global Financial Crisis.
His investment funds, banking businesses and global trade network return extraordinary results by measuring all the field effects of every endeavour. He is also the author of the novel Coup D’Twelve: The Enterprise that Bought the Presidency – now optioned for theatrical release.
Described as a futurist, fulcrum ninja, economist and global business executive, David disarms the most ardent pessimists, showing that with a flexible perspective, we can tackle any perceived problem and achieve extraordinary outcomes.
Beautiful Boy (2018)
In researching the Beautiful Boy true story, we learned that Nic's life of addiction began with vodka when he was 11. A year later, he was smoking marijuana, which turned into a daily habit by middle school. He was soon experimenting with drugs like acid, ecstasy, mushrooms and cocaine. At the age of 18, he tried crystal meth. It made him feel like he could achieve anything. "I felt like a rock star," Nic says of the first time he used it. However, his feeling of euphoria didn't last long. As the fix wore off, the good feelings evaporated and his body writhed in agony. To keep the good feelings alive, he became an habitual user. He did everything he could to avoid crashing. As a result, the addiction consumed his life and directly affected the lives of his family members. The movie does a good job depicting this. -Oprah.com
What led Nic Sheff to become a drug addict?
Nic's parents, both journalists, divorced when he was 4 years old. He ended up splitting his time between his mother, Vicki, in Los Angeles and his dad in San Francisco. On the surface, he seemed to handle it fine. He got good grades and was captain of the water polo team. However, the emotions he was bottling up couldn't stay suppressed forever. "The world was really abrasive and overwhelming, and I felt really hopeless. When I started drinking [alcohol], I couldn't stop," Nic says of his first foray into addiction at age 11. -Oprah.com
"I mean, I'd always felt so, you know, ugly and weak and pathetic," says Nic. "I felt sick and defective. I felt like there was something deeply wrong with me. I hated myself. I hated having to live with myself. At first getting high seemed like the only thing that could ever make me feel any different."
"Every time I did a shot, I truly felt like it was gonna be the shot that finally fixed everything for me. I thought if I could only do enough of whatever drug it was, I would eventually feel whole&mdashno longer like the alien. . the more drugs I shot in me, and the more sex for money I had, the more f**king depressed and suicidal and crazy I became. Because it wasn't working. I knew it wasn't working. But I kept trying and trying. I didn't know what else to do." -The Fix
Did Nic really keep journals throughout his life?
Yes. Like in the Beautiful Boy movie, the real Nic Sheff kept journals. He used them as a resource when writing his bestselling memoir Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines, which chronicles his experiences as a teenager addicted to drugs. Both Tweak and Nic's father's book Beautiful Boy provided the basis for the movie. -Oprah.com
Were Nic's parents really at first in denial about his addiction?
Yes. "I kind of think we parents are wired for denial because to see the trouble that our child is in is so painful. It's so terrifying," said Nic's father David Sheff. "I would hear the good things I'd see the good things. I'd block out the terrifying course that we were on until it was impossible to deny anymore."
Despite a significant number of absences from school, teachers and counselors weren't overly concerned, with one saying that college would straighten Nic out. They noted his good grades and large number of friends. At first, David kept his son's addiction hidden from family and friends, not wanting them to think badly of his son and how it reflected on him as a parent. -Oprah.com
Did Nic really get into the colleges he applied to?
Yes. Even by his senior year, drugs hadn't had a severe effect on Nic's academics. Like in the Beautiful Boy movie, the true story confirms that he got into the colleges he applied to but first ended up in rehab instead. When he made it to the University of California, Berkeley, he dropped out during his freshman year. -Oprah.com
Did Nic Sheff's dad, David Sheff, ever use drugs?
Yes. "When this hit our family, we were like so many families in this country," David Sheff says. "I was not naive about drugs. I used drugs when I was a kid. . But I still thought, like most of us, 'This could never happen to our family.' When it did, we were so blindsided. We were so devastated that I realized that this is something we have to talk about." That realization led David to write his book Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction, which was published in 2008 and became a #1 New York Times Best Seller.
David says that he had shared and discussed his own history of drug use with his son, a decision that he questions today. -Oprah.com
Was Nic's dad, David Sheff, really a well-known journalist?
Yes. David Sheff's lengthy experience as a journalist includes writing for Rolling Stone, The New York Times, Fortune, Wired and NPR. He has interviewed numerous famous subjects, including Steve Jobs, Carl Sagan, Frank Zappa, Jack Nicholson and John Lennon. In addition to penning the book Beautiful Boy on which the movie is based, he wrote the books All We Are Saying: The Last Major Interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, China Dawn, and Game Over.
As we researched the question, "How accurate is Beautiful Boy?" we discovered that Nic's mother, Vicki, is also a respected journalist with her own impressive list of celebrity interviews that includes Billy Joel, Dennis Hopper and Eddie Van Halen.
Did David Sheff smoke a joint with his son Nic?
Yes. This comes straight from David's memoir Beautiful Boy. He said that making the decision to share a joint with his son is one that he still regrets. "It was not something I'm proud of," says David, going on to explain that he was just trying to find a way to connect with his son. -Oprah.com
Did Nic's father, David Sheff, remarry and have two small children?
Yes. In the movie, Nic's second wife, Karen (portrayed by Maura Tierney), and their two small children, Jasper and Daisy, are all based on real people. Like in the film, they too suffered as David became obsessed with saving Nic. Jasper and Daisy idolized their older brother, who was their friend and playmate. They couldn't comprehend what he was doing to himself and how it was affecting the family. Nic knew that his drug use was destroying his family. He kept using in part to stop the guilt from sinking in. -Oprah.com
Did Nic Sheff really run away from home and live on the street?
Did the real Nic Sheff sell his body to other men for drug money?
Yes. Sheff, who is a straight man, says that he also did it to feel wanted and to find value in himself. "I mean, don&rsquot get me wrong, I needed the money. But, more than anything else, I wanted to feel beautiful," says Sheff. "I could&rsquove made money in other ways. Prostitution was something I wanted to do. That sounds crazy f**ked up, but it&rsquos true. And when I was out there, you know, hustling, I&rsquom telling you, a lot of the kids I met were just like me. They wanted to feel like I wanted to feel. They wanted to feel wanted."
"Of course, I&rsquom straight, so I would&rsquove preferred to be wanted by women for sure. But, hell, I&rsquod take what I could get. And men did seem to like me." Friends and family felt that he should leave the short period of time he spent prostituting himself in San Francisco and New York out of his 2007 book, Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines. It is not depicted in the movie. -The Fix
Did Nic Sheff steal money from his seven-year-old brother?
Yes. He says that stealing money from his little brother's piggy bank in order to buy drugs is one of the lowest things he's ever done. "I would have practically done anything to anybody in order to keep getting it," says Nic. He also tried to steal a computer from his mother, Vicki. She found him in a paranoid state hiding in the ceiling rafters in the garage. -The Fix
Did Nic Sheff overdose and end up in the ER?
Did David Sheff really check morgues and hospitals to make sure his son hadn't overdosed?
David Sheff says that this indeed happened. For a period of time when his son was at his worst, David would check morgues and hospitals every couple days to see if Nic had died or overdosed. In the movie, Steve Carell's character calls hospitals in search of his son.
Did Nic Sheff almost lose an arm from an infected needle hole?
Yes. Though it's not shown in the film, the Beautiful Boy true story reveals that Nic almost lost his arm when an infected needle puncture grew to the size of a baseball. -The New York Times
Did Nic Sheff go to rehab?
Yes. Fact-checking the Beautiful Boy movie reveals that Nic eventually agreed to seek help. At first, rehab helped him to recognize that he had a disease, despite still believing that he could control his drug and alcohol use. As in most cases, staying clean was hard to maintain. He relapsed multiple times, and as of 2009, had been through five rehabilitation programs. -Oprah.com
Did David Sheff suffer a brain hemorrhage?
Yes. As both David and Nic were working on their books, David suffered a brain hemorrhage, and his son, who had been off drugs for 18 months, relapsed. The hemorrhage affected David's brain in such a way that he had to relearn how to write. It is left out of the film. -The New York Times
How did Nic Sheff finally turn his life around?
"How is it that, today, I actually don&rsquot totally hate myself?" Nic said in an article he penned for The Fix. "The only thing I can say is that I actually started listening and started doing what those counselors and psychiatrists and people in meetings were telling me to do. Hell, it was no big secret. They&rsquod been prescribing me medication, telling me what outpatient groups to go to, what doctors to see, what steps to take. I just didn&rsquot listen. I didn&rsquot listen and I didn&rsquot believe."
Does Nic's father David blame himself for Nic becoming involved with drugs?
David says he struggled with blame and has often thought about what he could have done differently to help his son. "I think I could have intervened sooner," he told The New York Times in 2008. "Before Nic turned 18, I could have forced him into a program. I could have dragged him in, and at least it would have gotten him off the streets."
"I feel like. my dad did really the best he could, you know, and my mom did the best she could," said Nic, "and they really, really tried really hard, you know, and at a certain point, there was nothing that they could do. There was not one thing that they could do that was going to make me not go down the path that I went down." -Oprah
Where does the title "Beautiful Boy" come from?
The movie is based in part on David Sheff's book Beautiful Boy. The book title comes from the 1980 John Lennon song "Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)." Sheff interviewed John Lennon and Yoko Ono in September 1980, roughly three months before Lennon's murder.
What happened to Nic Sheff after the publication of his book?
In addition to working on his second book, Nic was living in Savannah, Georgia with his girlfriend and working as a nude model at a local art school. In 2011, he married Jette Newell, a model, actress and television writer. "That's what I care about now," he said in an article he wrote for The Fix, "I want to provide for the people I love. I want to take care of my dogs and to have kids one day and all that." Nic's second book, titled We All Fall Down, was published in 2011 and focuses on his ongoing efforts to stay clean as he suffers relapses and is in and out of rehab centers. He has since gone on to write for the Netflix TV show 13 Reasons Why.
Explore the Beautiful Boy true story further by watching an interview with the real David Sheff and son Nic Sheff.
The strange death of David Carradine: Was he murdered?
David Carradine was best known for his prolific list of characters adept in the martial art of kung fu. Carradine’s acting credits span widely, including the 1970s television show Kung Fu , a role in the Kill Bill franchise, and even multiple posthumous movie releases. In fact, David Carradine died while in Bangkok for production of the movie Stretch , which was released in 2011, two years after his death at 72.
A maid found Carradine on June 4th, 2009 in a closet, strangled by a cord from the drapes. Later, the autopsy revealed he had likely died the day before in reality.
Coroners eventually came to the conclusion that David Carradine’s death was an accident of his own making. They believed the actor died performing the act of autoerotic asphyxiation (while pleasuring himself). Before they came to this conclusion, they had considered it a suicide.
Past relationships uncover secrets
Carradine’s previous wives weren’t bashful in admitting Carradine had a penchant for promiscuous acts during sex, including choking. Despite this, David’s fourth wife didn’t believe he had killed himself.
Marina Anderson, who was married to David from 1998 – 2001, claims her ex-husband didn’t “fly solo”, and the facts “didn’t fit”. Anderson is convinced someone else was involved with Carradine’s death. She believes he was murdered.
Other skeptics believe someone else was involved, but that it may have been an accident. If David had been taking part in autoerotic asphyxiation, that doesn’t mean he was alone. If he had brought someone to the hotel room with him and things went wrong, it’s possible whomever was with him fled when they realized things had gone too far.
Marina, however, still believes Carradine’s death was a malicious act. She claims David had a tendency to wear flashy accessories and not hide his cash. Marina thinks this could have enticed someone to kill David to steal some of his belongings. Whether or not the person had been invited to the room was irrelevant to her.
David Carradine’s fourth wife isn’t the only one suspicious of the death, though. His fifth and widowed wife, Annie Bierman, sued the production company making Stretch just one year after his death. Annie’s suit claimed wrongful death and a breach of contract.
What happened to David Carradine?
Carradine’s family hired a New York forensic pathologist named Michael Baden to investigate the death further. Baden’s conclusion was that it was obviously not of natural causes, not a suicide, and therefore an accident. Baden did not write off the possibility of autoerotic asphyxiation.
When news broke of David Carradine’s death, there were contradicting stories on his hand position. Some purported his hands were tied above his head, while others say his hands were behind his back. Baden apparently reported David’s hands were above his head.
How someone could take part in autoerotic asphyxiation on their own, while his or her hands were tied (in any capacity) was not addressed by investigators, nor the odd location of his body: the hotel closet.
Official records still state David Carradine died on his own in an accident. Meanwhile, most of the people who knew the man personally have a difficult time believing that’s what happened. They’re convinced someone else was involved, but nobody has any idea who that person may be.
Maybe someday a satisfying answer will come to the fore, but until then, we’re left with an unfinished puzzle.
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Partner: Brynley Louise Brynley Louise is an avid watcher of movies & television, everything from action thrillers to the occasional sappy rom com. In her free time she writes, cuddles with kitties, makes YouTube videos, and pretends she knows how to paint. Baggzy Reply / Random internet mining brought me here. Although I don’t partake in that stuff, this seems to be an being accident. Even tho his wives don’t think so. They admit that he was into that stuff. It’s not likely that a person lookin to rob him would know he was into that stuff. Makes more sense that someone else was maybe partaking and panicked when he died so they fled. But intent to dead someone in this case just seems hard to believe. Reply / I did not know him personally but liked his acting so I followed his films, and was shocked by his appearance in later photos.
A Home Inscribed With the History of Venice Beach
Within a storied Los Angeles studio complex, Karina Deyko and David de Rothschild have built an eclectic, freewheeling space in which to live and work.
While the British environmentalist David de Rothschild was at sea in the spring of 2010, crossing the Pacific Ocean on the Plastiki — a 60-foot catamaran built primarily from recycled bottles — to raise awareness about the climate crisis, the actress Karina Deyko, his wife, made her own voyage of discovery. She had recently met, through a mutual friend in Los Angeles, the actress Kelly Reilly and the photographer Guy Webster, who helped establish the tenets of rock ’n’ roll portraiture in the 1960s with his images of Jim Morrison and the Rolling Stones. Reilly had been renting a small apartment within Webster’s sprawling studio complex in Venice Beach but would soon be traveling to London to make a film. Webster wondered if Deyko wanted to come see the space and possibly sublet it. At the time, she was living in Echo Park, on the east side of the city, and “I knew that when David was done with the Plastiki he’d want to be by the beach,” Deyko says. So she took Webster up on his offer.
Webster’s building, a 3,000-square-foot compound set within an early-20th-century industrial depot just four blocks from the ocean, and divided into a handful of distinct studio spaces, had served as a shed for storing boats in the 1910s. Although Deyko didn’t learn this history until later, she immediately sensed it would be a good place for the couple, who travel widely and often, to drop anchor for a while. She was drawn, foremost, to the sense of creativity that seemed to emanate from the gently weathered structure itself, with its worn concrete floors and high wood-beam ceilings, and from the intriguing people who drifted in and out of the space. As Venice evolved from a resort town in the 1910s to a short-lived hub for oil production in the 1930s to a waning industrial and entertainment district over the following decades, when its vacant warehouses were repurposed by artists and designers — Ray and Charles Eames established their practice on Abbot Kinney Boulevard in 1943, and the architects Thom Mayne and Frank Gehry lived and made work in the neighborhood in the ’70s and ’80s — so too did the building transform, from a storehouse to a mechanic’s shop to a crash pad for Webster’s circle of artist and musician friends. And the building’s past lives are still preserved in its architecture: Low-slung and partially wrapped in sheets of faded sky-blue corrugated iron, from the street it could easily be mistaken for a garage (there is even a peeling Texaco logo painted on the facade). “Energetically,” says Deyko, “I felt it. It was just an amazing space.” She sublet the studio, Reilly never returned to live in Los Angeles (she met her future husband during that film shoot in England) and Deyko and de Rothschild have now lived part-time in the building for 10 years.
During that decade, the couple purchased the studio and also acquired two of the neighboring units within the complex when friends moved out. Today, they inhabit a warren of interconnected spaces that hug a central paved courtyard and together comprise not only living quarters but also an office for the Lost Explorer, the environmentally conscious clothing and travel company that de Rothschild founded in 2015. When they moved in, it was the first home the pair had shared together and “we’ve made our own history here,” says Deyko. The interiors, which are featured in the designer, store owner and T contributor Alex Eagle’s new book “More Than Just a House” (out in October from Rizzoli), have evolved with the couple, developing not according to any conscious plan but as a scrapbook might, being added to as the pair acquire souvenirs from their travels and source and hand-build furniture to suit their changing needs. They favor objects that, in keeping with their home, bear the marks of unusual histories. On the white wall above the simple poured-concrete counter of the kitchen off the main living area, Deyko has pinned baglike woven jute fishing nets she bought on a trip to Japan. And nearly every accent or piece of furniture that they didn’t make themselves — “Karina is the kind of person who will discover some amazing vintage Japanese indigo fabric and turn it into bean bags,” says Eagle — the couple found at a flea market or secondhand store, and chose for its faded upholstery, chipping paint or time-warped wood. The idea behind Eagle’s book, which offers a look into some of her friends’ living spaces, is “to document homes through their objects, the things that people collect and that make them tick,” says Eagle. But while many of its subjects acquire art and design pieces — whether midcentury Italian lamps or Nike sneakers — with the doggedness of a true obsessive, Deyko and de Rothschild’s accumulation of stuff appears more Zenlike, as if their desire is not to own their possessions but simply to appreciate them, add to their stories and then pass them on.