Captured at newsgroup alt.bitterness
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Konstanze Sebastian)
Subject: Health Club From Hell
I know you all do so love my health club from hell stories, so here's another one that happened to me today.
There was a kids' swim meet and that brought in a load of people who had never been in the club before to watch their little kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews and what not compete in the meet.
While the meet was in progress someone's grandpa came out in the lobby to get a cup of coffee. This man was very old and his pants were pulled way up under his armpits, and he talked like Rain Man because he liked to, not because he had to. He grabbed an empty cup and leaned way over the counter and said something that I didn't understand because he was talking like Rain Man. (For a moment I contemplated tipping over the box of coffee stir sticks and saying, "How many are there?!?")
Anyway, I asked him to repeat himself and he leaned even farther over the counter so that he was inches away from my face and said, "How...much...
As he said this, a loogey flew out of his mouth and landed on my left breast. I was wearing a solid black sweater and the loogey really stood out. It was about the size of a lentil.
So he smiled and said, "SO SORRY, LET ME GET THAT," and then he started to reach across the counter and was headed right for my breast!
I pushed away from the counter and replied, "I'll take care of that--thank you." With such force I pushed my chair back, that instead of rolling smoothly the chair tipped over backwards and I landed on the floor.
Captured at newsgroup alt.fan.holmes
From: email@example.com (Marty Busse)
Does anyone have any more detailed information on Moriarty? Specifically, does anyone know of any canonical references that might allow one to surmise he had experience with political science in addition to mathematics?
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Mark Israel)
Subject: Re: Moriarty?
Universities in the 19th century did not offer the wide choice of disciplines that they do today. The term "political science" dates from 1779, but I don't know which (if any) universities offered it.
Most people with political ambitions would have read classics or maths at university. Peel and Gladstone got double first-class honours in classics and in maths (an unusual distinction).
According to the pastiche Enter the Lion, Moriarty's father was a prominent civil servant (with ambitions but very little imagination, which was why he named each of his three sons James).
When the inspector in The Valley of Fear said that Moriarty would have made a grand minister, I think he meant a religious minister rather than a cabinet minister.