July 24, 2017
July 24th, 2017

Question: What is the concept of “the obvious answer is usually the correct one” better known as?

Yesterday’s Question Answered below: Which was NOT once a real animation studio? Sticky Pigg, Duck Soup, Spun Buggy, International Rocketship, Stoopid Buddy.
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History for 7/24/2017
Birthdays: Simon Bolivar, Amelia Earhart, Alexander Dumas fils, Ambrose Bierce, Robert Graves, Pat Oliphant, Bela Abzug, Zelda Fitzgerald, Ruth Buzzi, Lynda Carter, Chief Dan George, Robert Hays, Gus Van Sant, Anna Paquin, Michael Richards, J-Lo Jennifer Lopez is 47

634 A.D. Accession of Omar as the third Caliph after Mohammed. This event caused the great split in the Moslem world. After the death of the Prophet his first successor was his best friend and companion during the Hijrah, Abu Bakir. But after his death the unrelated general and second best friend supporter Omar Ibn Al-Khattab, nicknamed "the Just" was nominated successor.
Mohammed's daughter Fatima and son-in-law and cousin Ali Ibn-Abu Taleb split off with their followers. After the death of Ali and his two sons Hassan and Hussein, their group under the third Fatimid Caliph, Osman Ibn-'Affan became the Shiite sect of Islam while the main branch under Omar became the Sunnite.

The rivalry is similar to the Protestant-Catholic split in Western Christendom.

1567- Mary, Queen of Scots, was imprisoned by the Scots and forced to abdicate her throne to her 1-year-old son James VI. Mary was raised in exile at the French court and her autocratic French ways and Catholic religion didn’t sit well with the Presbyterian Scots lords and their chaplain John Knox. So as soon as the succession was secure with a baby Mary was bundled off to prison and later turned over to Elizabeth of England for execution.

1568- Don Carlos was the eldest son of King Phillip II of Spain, the most powerful monarch in the world at the time. But Carlos and his dad didn’t get along, it all started when the King Phillip decided to marry the 16 year old bride Margaret of France, originally intended for Carlos. When Carlos showed signs of mental instability, he decided to take the side of Dutch rebels and made noises like he wanted to overthrow his father. Phillip had him imprisoned. He died of dysentery after fasting three days then gorging on meat and ice water, but many in Europe accused his father of poisoning him.

1656- Jewish philosopher Benedict Spinoza was excommunicated by the Rabbis of the Portuguese Synagogue in the Hague. His radical ideas of God made Jews, Catholics, Protestants and even some other humanists attack him, but his ideas formed the basis for modern rationalist philosophy. A German writer called Spinoza “Der Gott bedrunken Mensch” The Man Drunk on God. Albert Einstein, Kant, Goethe and Voltaire were all inspired by the philosophy of Spinoza.

1701- HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOTOWN!- After paddling in birchbark canoes 49 days from Quebec, French explorer Antoine de al Mothe-Cadillac and several families found the City of Detroit.

1758 – Mr. George Washington Esq., admitted to the Virginia House of Burgess.

1784- On his way home from France after the American Revolution, Dr Benjamin Franklin stopped in the British Isle of Wight. While there he met his only son William Franklin, the former Royal Governor of New Jersey. While Franklin was a leading patriot, William stayed loyal to Britain and suffered imprisonment and exile. The two men hated one another, they only agreed to meet to humor grandson Temple Franklin.
After an all night argument nothing was settled. Ben Franklin never spoke or wrote to his son ever again. When old Ben died, he left William out of his will. “ It is only what he would have done to me.” Temple Franklin never recovered any salaries Congress owed Ben Franklin, but he did inherit land in New Jersey from his Tory father.

1794-The End of the "Reign of Terror". After thousands of deaths and fear rampant, a group of French politicians called the Directorate overthrow Maximillien Robespierre and have him and his Jacobin followers guillotined. Robespierre didn't go quietly, a soldier named Charles Merda shot him in the face shouting Vive la Republique!" His brother Augustin Robespierre tried to escape out a window but just succeeded in breaking his hip.
At the guillotine Robespierre’s second in command Saint-Just was defiant to the end:
" I curse the dust I'm made of! I give it to you! Scatter my bones and Republics shall spring from them!" Robespierre wasn't so eloquent on the scaffold. He just bellowed in pain from the jaw wound. A woman shouted at him:" Go to Hell, Villain, and go knowing with you go the curses and maledictions of every wife, every mother !" When his head plopped into the basket Parisians cheered and applauded for 15 minutes. Then they overthrew and smashed the fearsome guillotine.
Napoleon was careful to keep few political prisoners and if he executed any he used a firing squad. He shrank from ever using the hated guillotine. He renamed the place where the Guillotine was Place de la Concord.

1824- The Harrisburg Pennsylvanian published the results of the first ever US public opinion poll- a clear lead for Andrew Jackson for president.

1832- French immigrant Benjamin Booneville led the first wagon train across the Rocky Mountains in Southern Wyoming. Booneville was a US Army captain who answered personally to President Jackson. Many believed he used the wagon train as an opportunity to assess British power in the Northwest.

1847- The Mormons reach the Great Salt Lake. After trekking 1500 miles for17 months since Illinois, leader Brigham Young said :"Enough. This is the place.'

1847 - Rotary-type printing press patents by Richard March Hoe, NYC.

1901- William Porter, also known as O.Henry, was released from jail after doing time for embezzlement. While in jail he found he had a talent for writing.

1923- Treaty of Lausanne- The western powers end the Greek-Turkish War and confirm the Turkish Republic's borders from the old Ottoman Empire. The Turks keep Anatolia and their Aegean coastline, The French get Syria, The Greeks the Ionian islands, the British Palestine, the Bolshevik Russians get Yerevan and the Armenians and Kurds get nothing.

1934- Cecil B. DeMille’s epic film Cleopatra premiered. It starred Claudette Colbert wearing skimpy metal lingerie that Lady Gaga could envy.

1938 - Instant coffee invented.

1948- HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARVIN THE MARTIAN- Warner's "Haredevil Hare" featuring the first Marvin the Martian.

1965- Bob Dylan released the song “Like a Rolling Stone”.

1966- Actor Montgomery Clift died of a heart attack at age 45. When his nurse said goodnight to him at 1:00AM, he asked him if he wanted to watch The Misfits on TV. Clift’s last words were “ Absolutely Not!”

1967- VIVE QUEBEC LIBRE. French President Charles DeGaulle was on a state visit to Canada. While giving an address to a huge crowd of in Quebec City he uses the same words he used in 1940 to call for French freedom from Nazi tyranny to announce his tacit support of French Canadian independence: “Vive Le France, Vive Quebec, Vive Quebeque Libre!” Long Live Free Quebec.
The Ottawa government cut short the remainder of his trip and packed him off back to Paris. But his words set the province aflame. All the separatist sentiment dividing Canada for next two decades-national referendums, the Meech Lake accords, the FLQ conspiracy and the Quebec Separatist movement, can trace their beginnings to those three words said on that day.

1969- After successfully landing on the moon and returning to Earth, Apollo 11 safely splashed down in the ocean.

1980- In London’s Dorchester Hotel, comedian and actor Peter Sellers died of a heart attack. He was 54.

1983-George Brett of the Kansas City Royals had a second homerun he hit nullified after Yankee manager Billy Martin complains he had too much pine tar on his bat.

1985- Walt Disney's "The Black Cauldron" premiered.

1998- Russell Weston was a schizophrenic who believed Navy Seals were hiding in his cornfield. He had shot his mothers twenty five cats because they had fleas. This day he went to Washington and tried to shoot his way into the US Congress, He killed two security guards before he was brought down in a hail of bullets. I wonder if the Congress was debating gun control at the time?

2002- Only once since the Civil War had a U.S. Congressman been officially expelled. Today the House of Representatives voted 420 to 1 to expel Congressman James Trafficante for his conviction on bribery and extortion charges, and having the worst haircut on Capitol Hill.

2005- American Lance Armstrong won the Tour du France bicycle race for an unprecedented 7th time, even after surviving testicular cancer that had spread to his spine and brain. Steroids or not, it was still one hell of an achievement. After he confessed to juicing, all his medals were taken away.
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Yesterday’s Question: Which was NOT once a real animation studio? Sticky Pigg, Duck Soup, Spun Buggy, International Rocketship, Stoopid Buddy.

Answer: Sticky Pigg.


July 23, 2017
July 23rd, 2017

Quiz: Which was NOT once a real animation studio? Sticky Pigg, Duck Soup, Spun Buggy, International Rocketship, Stoopid Buddy.

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Which US president was buried at his own request wrapped in the Stars and Stripes with a copy of the Constitution as a pillow?
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History for 7/23/2017
Birthdays: Ethiopian Emperor Rastafari Halie Selassie "the Lion of Judah", Raymond Chandler, Raymond Booth, Don Drysdale, Gloria DeHaven, Arthur Treacher, Pee Wee Reese, Bob Fosse, Harry Cohn, Don Imus, Slash, Marlon Wayans, Monica Lewinsky, Woody Harrelson is 57, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Edie McClurg is 67, Daniel Radcliffe is 29

Today is the Ancient Roman Festival of Neptune, God of the Sea.

1599- Michel Caravaggio received his first commission for a painting.

1645- Russian Czar Michael Romanov died, founder of the Romanov dynasty.

1846- Because he did not agree with the U.S. War with Mexico, writer Henry David Thoreau refused to pay his taxes. A his local constable fined him. The event caused him to write his famous piece "On Civil Disobedience" which inspired Mahatma Ghandi Martin Luther King and Ang Syung su Chi.

1866- The Cincinnati Reds Baseball club formed. The oldest continual professional baseball team in the U.S.

1868- The 14th Amendment ratified, giving all African Americans the right to vote. It just wasn’t enforced until 1965.

1880 - 1st commercial hydroelectric power planet begins, Grand Rapids, Mich

1885- Ulysses Grant died at age 63. Despite being a great general, he was a bad politician and a worse businessman. Bankrupt after trusting speculators who swindled him, Grant saw his memoirs as the only way to save his family from his bad debts. Writing up to 50 pages a day in constant pain, he refused any painkillers to not cloud his mind. But he coated his throat daily with a mixture of salt water and cocaine. He completed the book only four days before he died. They were published by the ex-confederate Mark Twain, and became a best seller.

1886- This was the day Bowery saloonkeeper Steve Brodie claimed he jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge and lived to tell about it.

1888 - John Boyd Dunlop patents the pneumatic rubber tire.

1892- The business partner of millionaire steel tycoon Andrew Carnegie was attorney Henry Clay Frick. Frick was charged by Carnegie to resolve the union issues at his steel works while he vacationed in Europe. Frick set off the Homestead Massacre, shooting with shotguns workers and their families who protested a 20% pay cut. Frick claimed he was merely the front man for Carnegie. Carnegie goes down in history as a great philanthropist. This day a Russian anarchist named Sasha Berksman entered Frick’s office and shot him twice. Frick recovered.

1894- Japanese troops occupy the Korean Imperial Palace. Japan held Korea as a colony until 1945.

1904 – The Ice Cream Cone created by Charles E. Menches during the LA Purchase Expo.

1908 -Turkish Sultan Abdul Hamid IV is deposed by a group of militant army officers demanding modern reforms called the Young Turks.

1914-The Austro-Hungarian Empire sent Serbia its final ultimatum. After their Archduke's assassination in Sarajevo by Bosnian- Serb terrorists, the Austrian government deliberately made their demands so humiliating that Serbia would have to reject it and Austria could cleanly declare war. Austria wanted to beat up the little nation it saw as encouraging revolution among the Slav parts of it's territory. But Serbia had an alliance that would bring Russia into the conflict and Austria an agreement that would bring Germany into war with Russia.
Once the Austrians got proof that the assassins were in the pay of the Serbian Secret Service, if they had simply declared war then no country would have minded. The Austrian Emperor Franz Josef said: "Russia will not step in to protect regicides." But Austria wasting weeks publicly posturing and intriguing, so Russia, Germany and France would have to get involved or lose face. The Russian ambassador said to the Austrians-" You are trying to set fire to Europe!" When German Kaiser Wilhelm read the ultimatum he said-" Spirited note, what?"

1919- At the request of his Secretary of War McAdoo, President Woodrow Wilson named the recently concluded great war against Germany as the "World War." It wasn’t called World War I until in Nov 1942, when Time magazine labeled the new conflict of 1939-45 World War II. Franklin Roosevelt thought it" too depressing, like we were bound to have more."

1920- Kenya declared a crown colony of the British Empire.

1927 – Reacting to a public finally tired of the Tin Lizzy Model T and increased competition, the Ford Motor Co sells the first Model A car.

1932-The Birthday of Fritos. Texas ice cream maker Elmer Doolin buys a recipe for corn chips from a Mexican fry cook for $100 dollars and started the Frito-Lay Company.

1936- Aviator Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh arrived in Berlin to begin a state visit of Germany as the personal guests of Adolph Hitler. Lindbergh praised the German Luftwaffe as the "greatest air force in the world". Only three Americans ever got the Third Reich’s highest civilian medal- Lindbergh, Henry Ford and the Chairman of the US Chamber of Commerce.

1937 – Scientists at Yale University announced the isolation of the pituitary hormone.

1937-TENNIS DIPLOMACY- The US and Nazi Germany spent much of the late 1930’s testing their competing philosophies on sports playing fields- Democracy vs Aryan Racial Purity. First Jesse Owens at the Olympics, then prizefighters Joe Louis and Max Schmeling, this day even the semi-finals of the Davis Cup Tennis championship became another Yankees vs Nazis test.
At Wimbledon England, American Don Budge and German Baron Gottfried von Cramm played the game of their lives. Hitler had personally telephoned Von Cramm the night before and ordered him to win. Ironically von Cramm was anti-Nazi. Don Budge won after 6 nail-biting tied sets. Queen Mary was present, and Hitler was glued to his radio. At one point American tennis great Bill Tilden who had been hired to coach the German team signaled that the match was in the bag. This provoked such an angry reaction from the audience that entertainers Jack Benny and Ed Sullivan tried to climb the fence to kick Tilden’s ass. But Budge came from behind to win. Von Cramm took defeat like a gentleman but Hitler didn’t. Shortly upon his return to the fatherland, the Gestapo arrested him for homosexual activity. He was released only after a campaign of protest letters from the worlds top athletes, organized by his old opponent, Dan Budge.

1942- Fuehrer directive #45. Adolf Hitler ordered General Von Paulus in Russia to turn his Sixth Army from his drive on the oil fields of Baku and take the city of Stalingrad.

1944- To counter charges that concentration camps are bad places, the Nazis invited the International Red Cross and neutral journalists to tour a model camp called Theresinstadt. The camp was a dummy with little white picket fences and flower pots in the barracks windows. The ICRC found conditions "moderately comfortable". After the Red Cross left the inmates were all shipped off to Auschwitz.

1951-Thelonius Monk recorded the seminal jazz album Straight, No Chaser.

1952- Egyptian King Farouk abdicated to a group of army officers led by General Mohammed Naikeeb and Col. Gamal Abdel Nasser. Another officer in the coup was Col. Anwar El Sadat. Britain had ruled Egypt since 1880 and after withdrawing in 1936 they continued to control Egyptian politics through the Albanian-born ruler King Farouk. It was the first time Egypt was ruled by Egyptians in 2,250 years. Gamal Nasser would make Egypt a leader in the Third World non-aligned movement, fought wars against Israel and nationalized the Suez Canal. Nassar later said: "Whenever I asked someone 'What should I do first to build the new Egypt ?" they would only advise me who I should kill."

1966- The comedy song "They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha, Ha!" released. The singer was Napoleon XIV.

1967- The city of Detroit exploded into race riots after white police raided a house party at 12th & Claremont for returned black Vietnam veterans. Forty-three died and it took 20,000 soldiers to restore order. It was the worst rioting in the city's history in a summer of race riots in other major American cities like Newark and Washington D.C.

1968- Fred Blasie won an unprecedented fifth World Wrestling Championship belt. Blasie later gained more fame for recording the comedy song "Pencil Necked Geeks" and beating up comedian Andy Kaufman in the ring for calling wrestling a hoax.

1974- The junta of military officers ruling Greece since the time of George Papadopoulos collapsed. Greece held free elections.

1982- Actor Vic Morrow and two children are killed by a stunt helicopter while filming "Twilight Zone, the movie". The last scripted line before his death was "I’ll Keep you safe kids, I swear to God!" The children were being worked into the early morning hours without a caretaker supervisor in defiance of the Coogan Laws. Director John Landis was investigated but exonerated. The only filmworker to dare to testify against Landis, the wardrobe supervisor, was blacklisted and never worked in Hollywood again.

1984- Vanessa Williams the first black Miss America, resigned after a photo spread of her in a nude lesbian scenario in Penthouse magazine. She denied any impropriety until the photos were published widely.

1986 - Britain's Prince Andrew married Sarah Ferguson called Fergie. They divorced later and she moved to the US and became the spokesperson for Weight Watchers.

1995- The Discovery of Comet Hale-Bop. It’s called that because it was discovered almost simultaneously by two separate astronomers-Alan Hale in New Mexico and Thomas Bop in Arizona. The comet’s passing close by the Earth was the signal for a messianic cult in San Diego called the Heaven's Gate to commit mass suicide by eating poison laced Jello chocolate pudding. They felt that suicide would enable them to join aliens flying in UFO’s flying in the comet’s tail. Media mogul Ted Turner said of the cult: "Oh well, one hundred fewer nuts in the world…"

2003-THE DOWNING STREET MEMO- British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his cabinet have a meeting about Iraq. During that meeting Blairs’ people openly discuss as fact that the George W. Bush administration had cooked the data as an excuse for their invasion. “ Their case is thin..” This while the White House was loudly declaring that war was it's last resort. When the Downing St memo was revealed in 2005, the story was quickly buried by the complacent U.S. media.

2004- Two armed men enter the Munch Museum in Norway and steal Edvard Munch’s masterpiece The Scream at gunpoint. It was recovered with some water damage three years later.
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Yesterday’s Question: Which US president was buried at his own request wrapped in the Stars and Stripes with a copy of the Constitution as a pillow?

Answer: Andrew Johnson was the veep who took over for the murdered Abe Lincoln. During the Civil War, Johnson was a loyalist democrat Senator from Tennessee, and because of that his political enemies continually questioned his loyalty to the U.S., even insinuating he was involved in the assassination of Lincoln! Johnson completed his term, but was so offended by having his patriotism questioned, this was his last request.


JUly 22, 2017
July 22nd, 2017

Question: Which US president was buried at his own request wrapped in the Stars and Stripes with a copy of the Constitution as a pillow?

Yesterday’s Quiz Answered below: What is a denouement?

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History for 7/22/2017
Birthdays: Emma Lazarus, Eduard Hopper, Gregor Mendel, Alexander Calder, James Whale, Oscar De La Renta, Rose Kennedy, Stephen Vincent Benet, Jason Robards, Bob Dole, David Spade is 53, Terence Stamp is 79, Danny Glover is 71, Alex Trebek, Bobby Sherman, Don Henley, Alan Mencken, Irene Bedard, William Dafoe is 62, John Leguizamo, Selena Gomez, Albert Brooks is 70- real name Albert Einstein, a nice name but already taken.

1298- William Wallace's Scottish rebels were crushed by English King Edward Ist Longshanks at the battle of Falkirk.

1378- Viva l’Popolo! Revolt of the Ciompi- Woolworkers seize control of the Florentine
Republic. They were eventually put down. This idea of peasants fed up with the Black
Death and class oppression who rise up against their feudal masters catches on. Peasant revolts break out across Europe- in France the Jacquerie; in England, Wat the Tyner’s revolt.

1502- Amerigo Vespucci and a Portuguese expedition return from exploring the coast
of Brazil. It's popular nowadays to claim Columbus was ripped off by a German
mapmaker from the credit of discovering America, but there's more to it than
that. Columbus went to his grave believing he had discovered the outer coastline
of Asia. Vespucci, after exploring from Brazil up to South Carolina was the first to
present the idea that this new coastline was not Asia, but something quite different.
A new continent.

1598- William Shakespeare lists on the Stationers Register, a sort of copyright registry, his new play The Merchant of Venice.

1657-Battle of Czarny Ostrow-Poles defeated George Rakoszy the Voivode of Hungary.

1793- THE MACKENZIE EXPEDITION- No, I’m sorry, but Louis & Clark weren’t the first white men to explore the North American Continent to the Pacific. This day a party
of French-Canadian voyageurs and Scottish trappers led by Alexander Mackenzie reached the Georgian Straights in British Columbia ten years earlier. MacKenzie had been trying since 1789 to find the Pacific shore of Canada and stake British claims to
the great Canadian Northwest. In 1790 Mackenzie started out from Lake Athabasca
and followed a river that took him to the Arctic ocean instead of the Pacific -oops!
This time he reached the right salt water.
His 1801 book "Travels to the Pacific" was studied and debated intensively by President Thomas Jefferson and his aide Meriwhether Lewis. It is the prime reason the U.S. plans for the Lewis & Clark expedition to the Pacific were given top priority. For the first time since Christopher Columbus white settlers at last understood just how big the North American continent was. Mackenzie correctly estimated it was about three thousand miles wide.

1812- Battle of Salamanca. The Duke of Wellington defeated Napoleon’s lieutenant Marshal Marmont in Spain. Wellington wrote in his report: " We have defeated 40,000
men in 40 minutes ". The battle was preceded by one of the most violent thunderstorms
anyone had ever seen. The troops were more afraid of the lightning bolts than the
cannon . The British noted that all of Wellington’s victories including Waterloo
were always preceded by a rainstorm.

1861- The day after the Battle of Bull Run the victorious Confederate army had no
serious opposition between it and Washington D.C. The Union army had panicked from
their defeat, thrown away their weapons and ran for the hills. If the Johnny Rebs
had marched the 25 miles into Washington and captured Lincoln, the Civil War would
have been over with and Bull Run would have been the American Waterloo. Instead
the Confederate generals sat down to argue amongst themselves who was to blame for
what went wrong in the battle, then a furious outbreak of measles ravaged the badly
sanitized camp. More men died from the measles than combat. The Confederacy let
slip their best chance to win the war in a few weeks instead of four bloody years.
One positive result of the panic after the battle was the Congress authorized the
creation of the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police Force, to supplant all previous
militias and provost guards to maintain order in the garrisoned city.

1862- EMANCIPATION- President Abraham Lincoln called a secret cabinet meeting at
The White House in the dead of night. Abe opened the session by reading jokes from
a newspaper by humorist Artemus Ward. The cabinet officers exchanged confused glances. Secretary of State William Seward found Abe’s folksy-hillbilly humor annoying. He wondered if the Old Tycoon would ever get to the point. Lincoln then shocked them
all, when he said that he intended to free the slaves by presidential proclamation. This
without the consent of Congress. Seward convinced him not do it until there was
a Union battle victory, because to do so at the then bad state of affairs would
look more like a last act of desperation. In a few weeks the Battle of Antietam
was fought, which wasn’t a great victory, but it was at least it wasn’t an embarrassing
defeat, so then the Emancipation Proclamation was announced.

1864- THE BATTLE OF ATLANTA- Confederate leader John Bell Hood attempted to break the siege of the Atlanta by William Tecumseh Sherman. At the beginning of the fight Sherman’s gifted corps commander General Dan MacPherson was killed by a sniper. MacPherson was admired by the generals of both sides. Had he lived, many predicted he would have been President. When MacPherson’s successor General John Logan asked for orders, Sherman told him "Just Fight’em. Fight them like Hell!" Hoods attempts at a break out failed.

1893 –Katharine L. Bates wrote the song "America the Beautiful," in Colorado.

1894- The first true automobile race- from Paris to Rouen.

1898- Russian revolutionary Lenin married Nadehzda Krupskaya.

1916- Anarchists set off a bomb at a Preparedness Day Parade in San Francisco. Ten
killed. Despite overwhelming evidence of their innocence, union leaders Tom Mooney and Warren Billings were convicted of murder and given life sentences. Mooney was pardoned in 1939 and Billings not until 1961! Oh, uh…sorry about your life there.

1917 –In the provisional government between the fall of the Russian Czar and the
Communist revolution A.P. Kerensky was the leading figure. This day after Prince
Lvov resigned from the government Alexander Kerensky became Russian Prime Minister
and combined it with the defense and justice ministry. He moved his offices into
the Czars palace and began virtual one man rule. It was said Kerensky was very passionate and motivational as a speaker, he just didn’t have many ideas.

1921- Artist Man Ray arrived in Paris determined to go Dada!

1933- Wiley Post completed the first solo flight around the world. The following
year Post would die in the same plane crash as writer Will Rogers.

1934- Public Enemy #1-John Dillinger was shot down by G-Man Melvin Purvis coming
out of the Biograph Theater on Lincoln Ave. in Chicago. He had just seen Clark
Gable and Myrna Loy in Manhattan Melodrama. Dillinger 's identity was betrayed
by Anna Sage, the Woman in Red, a German-Romanian prostitute who didn't want
to be deported. As they came out of the theater Purvis shouted “ STICKEM UP JOHNNIE!” Dillinger dropped into a crouch and went for his gun. Purvis blew him away. Anna Sage was deported anyway.

1945- In one of the last diplomatic notes to come out of Japan before the atomic bombing, Japan’s Foreign Minister said Japan refused any surrender terms that did keep their Emperor in absolute power.

1946-THE KING DAVID HOTEL- The British headquarters in Palestine
was situated in the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. This day a terrorist bomb blew
up the hotel, killing 91 people, and maiming dozens more. It was the work of fringe Israeli guerrillas called the Stern Gang. In 1980 their leader, now Prime Minister Menachem Begin, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize with Egyptian Anwar Sadat, another former terrorist.

1965- Cary Grant married Dyan Cannon.

1967- Jimi Hendrix quit as opening act for the Monkees.

1977- Walt Disney’s film "The Rescuers" featuring the last work of Disney
master animator Milt Kahl.

1989- Nintendo released in America the Gameboy. Designer Gunpei Yokoi designed it and the unique cross shaped directional fingerpad to replace a joystick control. Nintendo loaded Tetris on to it and it became a worldwide phenomenon. Gunpei Yokoi was killed in a car accident outside Kyoto in 1997.

1991- Jeffrey Dahmer’s final captive, Tracy Edwards, escaped his lair, still handcuffed, and got through to the Milwaukee Police. When officers arrested Dahmer, they found the remains of 11 people in his apartment.

1996- The Daily Show premiered on Comedy Central. John Stewart replaced Craig Kilborn in 1999 and made it famous.

2002- Worldcom files for Chapter 11, up to then the largest bankruptcy in US history. This while the CEO Bernard Ebbers was building himself a new $94 million mansion. Ebbers got 25 years in prison, and Worldcom reorganized as MCI. The following year the Bush Administration awarded them a no-bid contract to build a cellular telephone system in Iraq. Iraqis use the phones to set off remote control bombs.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: What is a denouement?

Answer: It means an ending or conclusion.


July 21, 2017
July 21st, 2017

Quiz: What is a denouement?

Yesterdays Quiz Answered below: Where exactly is The Devil’s Triangle?
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History for 7/21/2017
Birthdays: Ernest Hemingway, Issac Stern, Marshal McCluhan, Norman Jewison is 88, Don Knotts, Janet Reno, Gary Trudeau the creator of Doonesbury, Ernst Shuftan- inventor of the "Shuftan Effect", a cheap way of combining actors with miniatures by shooting through mirrors. All those "Lost World" Cesar Romero fighting the giant Iguanas were done that way. Edward Herman, Robin Williams, Josh Harnett

Happy National Zippo Lighter Day. Smoking is bad but Zippos are cool- another one of life’s mysteries.

365AD- The Egyptian city of Alexandria was devastated by an earthquake. The tremor may have toppled the famous Pharos lighthouse. The quake caused the waters of the harbor to recede then return with tsunami force.

1588-the Spanish Armada set sail from Lisbon, Seville, Corunna and Cadiz to attack England. One of the sailors was playwright and poet Lope De Vega.

1605- The false Dmitri crowned Czar in Moscow. Dmitri was a Lithuanian priest named Grishka who claimed to be the dead child of Ivan the Terrible come back to life. His claim was backed up with a powerful Polish magnate's private army, the Mniszechs. He captured Moscow as Czar Boris Gudunov died but couldn't hold it long.

1784- Abigail Adams went by coach from the English Channel via Canterbury to London to join her husband John Adams. Adams was to assume his post as first ambassador to the Court of Saint James from the new nation of the United States. Abigail wrote of her coach journey how when they passed the area called Blackheath there was fear of robbers and highwaymen. She saw one robber captured, and shuddered that he would soon be hanged. She wrote in her diary:” It is good that such terrible things do not happen in America!” Why, women alone travel the roads in perfect safety!”

1798- "Soldiers! Forty Centuries look down upon you! “The Battle of the Pyramids- Napoleon's cannon mowed down the Mamelukes, who had ruled Egypt since the Crusades. He was so impressed with their courage that he later enlisted a corps of them in his own army. It was speculated around this time the Sphinx lost it's nose. French troops used the Sphinx for target practice. The battle was actually fought a distance from the Pyramids, but Nappy disliked the title Battle of Embaba’s Melon Patch, so Battle of the Pyramids it was.

1821- George IV crowned King of England at Westminster Abbey, but without his Queen Caroline. They couldn't stand one another and he was trying to get a divorce. So when she showed up in her state carriage for the coronation, on the kings orders the Lords and Peers rushed to shut the cathedral doors, leaving her out in the crowd of spectators.

1861- BATTLE OF BULL RUN or FIRST MANASSAS- First major engagement of the Civil War. Irwin McDowell's Yankees and Pierre Beauregard's Confederates had unknowingly adopted the exact same battle plan, feint with right and strike around the left. They would have completely marched around each other if they hadn't blundered together. The North was so confident of victory Washington society turned out with picnic baskets to watch the fun.

What they saw was a horrible Union defeat and they were caught in the mob of panicked soldiers running back to the Capitol called the Great Skeedadddle. Uniforms weren't standard yet and many states sent their men in colorful militia costumes. The union men from Wisconsin wore grey and the Rebels from Pensacola Florida wore blue. Both were shot at by their own sides. Rebel General Thomas Jackson was holding off union assaults when a dying general shouted : "Look, there stands Jackson like a stone wall!" The nickname stuck.

Stonewall Jackson had told his men:" When you charge, howl like furies." For the first time the famous Rebel Yell was heard. Confederate President Jefferson Davis was so nervous he rushed to the battlefield in a locomotive. When he arrived on the scene he tried to make a speech to rally the spirits of some ragged soldiers he thought had fled. Turned out they were Stonewall Jackson's veterans, just resting after they won the battle for him.

Bull Run could have been an American Waterloo, because the Yankee army was completely destroyed, and nothing stood between the southerners and the White House, only 40 miles away. But the gray-backs were also disorganized and exhausted, so the pursuit was called off. The Civil War would not be won in one big battle, but would drag on for four bloody years.

1865- The Civil War over and Abraham Lincoln dead, the hard line cabinet of Pres. Andrew Johnson voted to put Confederate ex-president Jefferson Davis on trial for treason. Former lawyer Davis was hoping for just such a trial; so he could force the issue of the Constitutional legality of secession out into the open and maybe even get a ruling from the Supreme Court. It was just for these reasons that cooler heads prevailed and the treason charge was never acted upon. After two years in prison Davis was quietly released and allowed to retire.

1884- In one of the dirtiest elections in U.S. history, the New York Post broke the story of Democratic candidate Grover Cleveland fathering a child out of wedlock and abandoning the mother. Cleveland admitted paternity but won election anyway, because the Republican James G. Blaine was even worse. Just as Cleveland pioneered the Democratic preoccupation with sex, Blaine pioneered the cozy relationship between the Republicans and big business. He had taken so many kickbacks, his nickname was the Tatooed Man. A leading Protestant divine stood with Blaine and accused the Democratic Party of being “ The Party of Rum, Romanism and Rebellion." Every Irishman in the country immediately voted for Cleveland. (around forty per cent of the population of New York alone, was Irish at the time). Republicans chanted "Ma, Ma! Where’s My Pa!- Dems countered" He’s Going to the White House, Ha Ha Ha!" another ditty was: "Mary is healthy and so is the Kid, We Voted for Cleveland and we’re damn glad we did!" Aren’t you glad we don’t have dirty elections like that today, boys & girls?

1917-Ford introduces their first truck, the Model TT. It weighed one ton and had a new innovation not in regular automobiles, a reverse gear.

1936- Republican Spanish troops besiege the Fascist fortress of ALCAZAR. They maintained a telephone hookup with the commander, Colonel Moscardo, to try and convince him to surrender. At one point they told him they were going to shoot his son if he didn't give up. The colonel said: " Put my son on the phone!" Hello son?" Put your faith in God, shout Viva Espana, and Die like a Man!" Moscardo never surrendered and the siege was broken.

1944- Democratic Presidential Convention nominates Sen. Harry Truman of Missouri to be Franklin Roosevelt's Vice President on the second ballot. As early as December 1943 the Democratic party knew FDR was a dying man. Whoever was his running mate would in all likelihood become President. With World War II not finished and the United Nations to create, this was a pretty important choice.

The incumbent Vice President was Henry Wallace, an eccentric who had a guru, sent field scientists to China and India to look for traces of teenage Jesus, and who believed Joe Stalin's Russia was the model for the American economy to pull out of the Depression. Democratic Party Chairman Robert Haneghan pulled every string he had to get Wallace off the ticket and Truman on. Truman himself didn't want the job and Roosevelt was promising it to everyone he met.

At last Truman agreed, and Hanaghan barred a pro-Wallace demonstration. He even sent a man with an ax upstairs to threaten the convention organist to stop playing "The Corn Grows High in IOWA" (Wallace's home state). Truman talked to Roosevelt only once or twice before FDR died and Truman had to decide whether to drop the A-Bomb and form the post-war world. Wallace tried a third party presidential run with Chet "the Singing Cowboy" Taylor as running mate in 1948. Robert Haneghan said-"The only epitaph I want on my tombstone is: AT LEAST HE PREVENTED HENRY WALLACE FROM BECOMING PRESIDENT!"

1954- The Fellowship of the Ring, first book of J.R.R. Tolkein’s The Lord of the Rings, first published. C.S. Lewis said the book “came forth like thunder on a summers day..”

1959- Judge Frederick van Pelt-Bryan ruled that Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence was not pornography and therefore could be sent through the postal system.

1969- “That’s One Small Step for Man..” Neil Armstrong stepped on the surface of the Moon.

1970- In Egypt the Aswan High Dam completed, finally controlling the annual summer flooding of the Nile.

1971, The New York Times ran an article about Taki 183 on the front page of its inside section, titled "Taki 183" Spawns Pen Pals. Taki was the first graffiti tag artist. Taki was a nickname of a man named Demetrius from 183 St. In the late 1960s-1970s his tag seemed to be everywhere.

1974- Constantin Karamanlis returned to Greece from exile to signal the restoration of Greek democracy after the rule of the Colonels Junta fell.

1980- SAG went on strike for actor's residuals from videocassette and cable TV sales.
The actors hit the bricks twice more, in 1988 and 2000.
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Yesterday’s Question: Where exactly is The Devil’s Triangle?

Answer: It is off the coast of Florida. The triangle points are Ft Lauderdale, Cuba and Bermuda.


July 20, 2017
July 20th, 2017

Quiz: Where exactly is The Devil’s Triangle?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Who were Leopold and Loeb?
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History for 7/20/2017
Birthdays: Petrarch, Sir Edmund Hilary, Lord Elgin, Quaker Anne Hutchinson, Natalie Wood, Theda Bara the Vamp, Carlos Santana, Lord Reith- the first Director General of the BBC. Giselle Bunchen is 37, Sandra Oh is 46, Harrison Ellenshaw, Diana Rigg is 79

1402- Near Ankara (Angora), the armies of the Ottoman Sultan of Turkey were destroyed by a Tartar invasion led by Tamerlane.

1420- Czech leader John Ziska led the Hussite rebels to defeat the German Emperor Sigmund at Witkowo Hill, freeing his besieged capitol Prague. Ziska led armies in battle despite losing both eyes in fighting. When he finally died, he left instructions to have his body skinned, and the hide dried, and stretched onto a war drum.

1773-The Vatican outlaws the Society of Jesus, aka the Jesuits. The pope had gotten tired of all their intrigues and foreign entanglements. They went into hiding until they re-emerged reformed in 1820.

1804- Sir Richard Owen born. He was the British scientist who coined the term Dinosaur for all the ancient lizard fossils being dug up. Yet he came to oppose Darwin’s theories of evolution. He believed dinosaurs were the creatures from Noah’s Flood who missed the boat.

1858 – Admission first charged to see a baseball game, 50 cents.
NY beat Brooklyn 22-18.

1868 - 1st use of tax stamps on cigarettes.

1869- Mark Twain’s The Innocents Abroad and in the Holy Land first published. If you ever wondered what was the most popular book in America during the 19th Century, it was not Moby Dick, War & Peace, Jane Eyre or David Copperfield. The all time best selling book in America during the Victorian Era was a sappy travel diary" Tent Life in the Holy Land "by a now forgotten author William Prime. Twain had taken the Grand Tour abroad that was fashionable with the new American wealthy classes and thought he’d have some fun recounting his own trip” To cross the Sea of Galilee by boat, a big local Arab demanded eight dollars for use of his miserable conveyance. No wonder Christ preferred to walk.”

1877-Russians besiege Turkish held Plevna in Bosnia.

1879- Joel Chandler Harris published in the Atlanta Constitution "The Story of Mr. Rabbit and Mr. Fox as Told by Uncle Remus". The first Uncle Remus stories. Harris collected most of the stories from African American storytellers.

1881- Sitting Bull returned to U.S. territory and surrendered. He and his people had been residing in Canada since the Little Big Horn. When Canadian officials first challenged them being in Canada, Bull produced out of his medicine bag old treaty medals stamped with King George III on them. He said "We also are the children of the Great Redcoat Mother."

1919- Pancho Villa assassinated while driving in his new Dodge. Even with 16 bullets in him he still managed to kill one of his attackers. Three years later someone broke into his grave and stole his head.

1920- On the last day of testimony at the Scopes Monkey Trial defense attorney Clarence Darrow surprised everyone by calling prosecuting attorney William Jennings Bryan to the witness stand. In a dramatic all day debate Darrow and Bryan grappled over the validity of the Bible vs, Charles Darwin’s theory of Evolution. Darrow ultimately lost the case, but this debate made Bryan look foolish. The confrontation was dramatized in Stanley Kramer’s 1965 film “Inherit the Wind”.

1944- THE GENERALS PLOT- German generals plot to kill Adolf Hitler, take over the Third Reich and declare a ceasefire with the Allies. During a conference at Hitlers strategic HQ at Rastenberg Prussia one-eyed Count von Stauffenburg planted a suitcase-bomb next to Hitler's feet and excused himself. But someone bumped against it and moved it out of the way. After watching the massive explosion Stauffenburg then relayed the code word "Valkyrie". This meant the plotters could begin to arrest key Nazis, disarm the SS and form a provisional government with Field Marshal Erwin Rommel as President.
In the explosion many were killed but amazingly Hitler only suffered a punctured eardrum and a stiff left arm. That night he went on nationwide radio to announce he was all right, and even read the weather in that day's newspaper to prove he was not pre-recorded. The coup plotters were rounded up and executed, some hung slowly with piano wire. Their deaths were filmed for Hitler's amusement at home. Rommel the Desert Fox was forced to commit suicide. After 5000 arrests the purge was halted only when an allied bombing hit the courtroom, and blew up the judge.

1946-Bob Clampett's cartoon"the Great Piggy Bank Robbery" with Daffy Duck as Duck Tracy. "I'm gonna rrrrrrrrrrrubbb ya out, see !"

1951- King Abdallah of Jordan was shot and killed at the Al Acqsa Mosque in Jerusalem by a Palestinian. He was attending a memorial service for the Prime Minister of Lebanon who had also been assassinated. He was an enemy of the Palestinian leader the Grand Mufti and resisted the Mufti’s attempts to declare a Palestinian state after Israel’s War of Independence. King Abdallah claimed all Palestinian lands not part of Israel should be part of Jordan. Abdallah then angered the Palestinians further by wanting to make peace with Israel and declaring that the Jews had every right to worship at their holy places like the Wailing Wall, then under Jordanian control. Watching his grandfather killed was young future King Hussein, who was never that fond of Palestinians afterwards. He drove them out of his country in 1972 spawning the Black September Movement.

1954- As part of the settlement brokered by the United Nations for the French to leave colonial Indochina, the country was divided in half at the 17th parallel, with the Communists in North Vietnam and the non-Communists in the South. This set the stage for the next twenty years of wars that would last until unification in 1975.

1963- Lt. Colonel John Paul Vann, acknowledged one of the finest combat field commanders in the service, scheduled a meeting with the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington. He planned to tell them that further American military involvement in Vietnam was pointless. The generals already knew his purpose and refused to meet with him. Afterwards he was slowly pushed him out of the army for having an attitude problem. He died in combat as a civilian advisor near Da Nang in 1967.

1964 –The first surfin' record to go #1-Jan & Dean's "Surf City"

1968 - Iron Butterfly's "In-a-Gadda-da-Vida", considered the first heavy metal song to
hit the pop charts. The song was written as “ In the Garden of Eden” but singer Doug Ingle was so drunk and stoned, In a Gadda Da Vida was all that he could slur out.

1969- Tranquility Base- The Eagle has Landed. Apollo11’s Lunar Module the LEM first landed humans on the Moon. The astronauts spent a night’s sleep and preparing and stepped out on the Lunar surface the next day.

1973- Bruce Lee died of cerebral edema one month before his last film Enter the Dragon premiered. The handsome kung fu movie star single-handedly made Chinese martial arts a world wide craze, and the Chop-Socky genre film a standard genre in world movie theaters. He was buried in his Enter The Dragon costume. Bruce Lee was only 33.

1974- Turkey invaded the island of Cyprus, after a Greek coup toppled the coalition gov’t of Archbishop Makarios.

1976-Warner\Lambert, makers of Trident sugarless gum, comes out with their famous slogan "Sugarless gum is recommended by four out of five dentists who chew gum". When people asked what gum did the fifth dentist recommend, they were brushed.

1976- The Viking I probe successfully landed on Mars.

1984 - Jim Fixx, creator of the Jogging craze through his hit book Running, died at 52 of a heart attack. Apologists for a health advocate dying so young, say Fixx would have died even younger without his physical routine. The creator of PowerBars also died in his fifties. Pass me another donut.

1994 - OJ Simpson offers $500,000 reward for evidence of ex-wife Nicole’s killer. No clues or suspects other than himself ever appeared. As David Letterman later said" OJ began to vigorously search for the real killer on all the major golf courses of the nation."
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Yesterday’s Quiz: Who were Leopold and Loeb?

Answer: Nathan) Leopold and (Richard) Loeb were two wealthy Chicago university students, Both were highly intelligent and inspired by Nietzsche’s ideas of the superman, were convinced they could pull off the "perfect crime”. In order to prove their idea, in 1924 they murdered a teenaged boy. The crime was quickly solved and Leopold & Loeb were sent away for 99 years. Loeb was murdered in prison. Leopold was released in 1958.


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