Jan 16, 2020
January 16th, 2020

Question: Last week Russian President Putin and Syrian dictator Assad were caught on camera joking about President Trump. Saying he would have a “Road to Damascus” moment. What does that mean?

Yesterday’s question answered below: In the Huckleberry Hound TV Show, Huckleberry’s short was only the first third of the show. Who starred in the other 2 cartoons?
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History for 1/16/2020
Birthdays: Yukon poet Robert Service, The inventor of the pneumatic tire- Andre Michelin 1853, Ethel Merman, Dizzy Dean, Peter Ustinov, Henry Mancini, A.J. Foyt, Marilyn Horne, Sade, Michael Wilding, Eartha Kitt, Debbie Allen is 70, John Carpenter, Diane Fossey, Kate Moss is 46, Tsianina Joelson, Animator Raul Garcia

1761- The British capture Pondicherry, the last French outpost in India.

1786- The Virginia Legislature passed the Ordinance of Religious Freedom, which stated that no man could be forced to join or support any church he didn’t want to. The Ordinance became the basis for the First Amendment to the Constitution.

1865- After resting his army in Savannah, Georgia for Christmas, Yankee General William Tecumseh Sherman began to move his blue columns north towards South Carolina.

1883- Moved to act by the assassination of President James Garfield by a demented civil servant, Congress passed the Pendleton Act creating rigid merit standards for government jobs and creating the Civil Service Commission. Before this, things ran as the "Spoils System"- after every election hundreds of government jobs were given by the President and his party to party hacks and amateurs as payment for favors. Much uhh…as things are run today.

1891- Three weeks after the Wounded Knee massacre the last independent warrior bands of Sioux Indians came in and surrendered to the U.S. Cavalry at the Pine Ridge Reservation.

1917-THE ZIMMERMAN TELEGRAM- The reason other than the Lusitania that the U.S. entered World War I. The Kaiser's generals fretted that the unrestricted U-Boat sinkings were strangling Britain, but they may force America into joining the Allies. So they concocted a scheme to keep the Yankees busy on their own side of the world.

On this day, British intelligence handed President Woodrow Wilson an intercepted message from Baron Zimmerman the German charge d' affaire in New York to the German Ambassador in Mexico City. It relayed an offer from Berlin of an alliance, if Mexico would please invade Texas! The Kaiser promised President Huerta return of the entire U.S. southwest. The Mexican president wasn't enamored with the U.S. lately, but he still declined the offer.
Instead of checking U.S. participation in World War I, the incident all but decided it. Wilson had run for re-election as an anti-war candidate, but after this he was convinced Germany had to be defeated.

1919- In Argentina it was the end of the Sanglante- the Bloody Week. The government crushed a general nationwide strike – 700 killed.

1920- The League of Nations held its first meeting in Paris.

1935- “Ya better come out! We got you surrounded!” Kate Barker, called Ma Barker, died in furious shootout with the FBI at Ocklawaha, Florida. Legend has it they found Ma's body with the smoking tommygun still cradled in her lap. Others say she was only an ignorant hillbilly lady traveling with the boys gang as a cover.
Only one of Ma Barker's sons (Fred) was killed with her. Herman Barker committed suicide at Wichita, Kansas, August 29, 1927, after being blinded by police bullets in a gun battle in which he killed a policeman. Arthur "Doc" Barker was captured by the FBI in Chicago eight days before the shootout that killed Ma and Fred. He was killed attempting to escape from Alcatraz on January 13, 1939. Lloyd "Red" Barker was released from Leavenworth in 1939 after serving seventeen years of a 25-year sentence for mail robbery. He was murdered by his wife at their suburban-Denver home on March 18, 1949.

1936- the first racetrack photo-finish camera installed.

1936- Albert Fish, the Moon Maniac was executed at Sing Sing Prison. The 66 year old Fish had killed ten children and cannibalized their remains. He even went as far as to send a letter to the mother of his last victim describing how he had turned her daughter into a stew. The letter was traced back to him and he was arrested. He almost shorted out the electric chair because he kept his underpants filled with metal sewing needles. As he went to his death he told guards he was looking forward to the electric chair. "it is a thrill I never tried."

1938- Benny Goodman brought the new Swing Music to staid old Carnegie Hall. Count Basie and Harry James joined in to get the tuxedoed crowd dancing in the aisles, then afterwards they all went uptown to the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem to watch Count Basies band square off against the legendary Chick Webb. After this triumph, Benny Goodmans’ band would never be the same- Lionel Hampton, Harry James and Gene Krupa all split off to form their own orchestras." That band I had the night I played Carnegie Hall was the best I think I ever had." Goodman said later.

1938- Nylon invented by the Dupont Company.

1939- Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr announced the successful fission of uranium. They asked that it be used for peaceful purposes only. One of their colleagues Dr. Leo Szilard immediately warned the U.S. that they better start a nuclear bomb program, because another friend of Bohr's, Dr. Rudolph Heisenberg, planned to build one for Hitler.

1940- Lee Francis, then Hollywood’s top madam, was busted for prostitution.

1942-Actress Carol Lombard and her mother died in a plane crash in the Sierra Mountains while returning from a war bond drive. Her husband, movie king Clark Cable was so disconsolate that he volunteered for air force combat squadron instead of doing USO work, and went on dangerous missions trying to get killed.

1942- Japanese armies attacked Burma.

1945- Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg disappeared. The diplomat had been covertly smuggling hundreds of Jews out of Nazi occupied Austria by giving them neutral Swedish passports. When the Soviets overran Vienna Wallenberg dropped out of sight. In 1991 The Russian government at last admitted that Wallenberg died in Leningrad’s Lubyanka Prison.

1954- THE WAR ON COMICS- Senator Estes Kefauver of Tennessee chaired the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency. They concluded that one of the contributing factors to adolescent moral decay was four-color comic books! The media called comics “The Ten Cent Plague”.
The probe was sparked by a book called The Seduction of the Innocent by psychiatrist Frederic Wertham. He charged among other things that Batman & Robin were gay because when not fighting crime, Bruce Wayne & Dick Grayson lounged around all day in silk pajamas, with no women! That Superman was a fascist, and Wonder Woman’s strength and independence made her a lesbian!
Despite public testimony by Walt Kelly, Milt Caniff, Al Capp and Bill Gaines, 350 comic book companies including the EC "Tales from the Crypt" label were driven out of business. The strict comics-code was established. The comic book industry, which had been selling one million books a month, never regained that level of prosperity in the US again.

1962-First day of shooting on the film Dr No with a young actor named Sean Connery in the role of James Bond. Ian Fleming thought the casting of Connery would be a disaster, he had wanted Cary Grant or David Niven.

1970- Col. Mohammar Khaddafyi became premier of Libya, a job he kept until 2011.

1974- Peter Benchley’s novel Jaws first published.

1979- The Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlevi, fled Teheran in the face of the Ayatollah’s fundamentalist revolution.

1980-The silver market collapses, making the Hunt Brothers from two of the richest men in America to two of the poorest.

1991- GULF WAR I - U.S. French, British and Arab airforces began attacking Iraqi-held Kuwait. Sadam, Wild Weazels, Gen Stormin’ Norman Schwarzkopf, Republican Guards, Scuds, Smart Bombs and CNN's Peter Arnett hanging a mike out the window of his Baghdad office as the bombs rained down.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: In the Huckleberry Hound TV Show, Huckleberry’s short was only the first third of the show. Who starred in the other 2 cartoons?

Answer: Yogi Bear and Boo Boo, and Pixie & Dixie and Mr Jinks.


Jan 15, 2020
January 15th, 2020

Quiz: In the Huckleberry Hound TV Show, Huckleberry’s short was only the first third of the show. Who starred in the other 2 cartoons?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Who said: “ there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns -- the ones we don't know we don't know."
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History for 1/15/2020
Birthdays: Dr. Martin Luther King, Moliere, Gamal Abdel Nasser, outlaw Cole Younger, Charro, Matthew Brady, drummer Gene Krupa, Lloyd Bridges, Mario Van Peebles, Josef Broyer the mentor of Sigmund Freud, Margaret O’Brien, Aristotle Onassis, Captain Beefheart, Dr. Edward Teller, Disney animator Dave Pruiksma

Happy Druid New Year

Feast of St. Paul the Hermit

1208-THE ALBIGENSIAN CRUSADE- Count Raymond of Tolouse, son-in-law of King Pedro the Lecher of Aragon, was thought to be sympathetic to a heretical Christian cult called Cathars, from the French region of Albi (so Albigensians). They believed in a Zoroastrian dualism in direct conflict with the Church. When a papal representative named Peter De Castellan was sent from Rome to tell Count Raymond to knuckle under, he was assaulted. The Pope had previously sent St. Dominic to re-convert the Cathars but after ten years of preaching and fasting St. Dominic’s final conclusion was :”Someone should take a stick to those people!”
So a crusade was declared not against Moslems in the Middle East, or the Moors of Spain, but against other Christians in the heart of Europe. The holocaust was terrible, for the first time the answer of how to tell the guilty from the innocent was: ”Kill them all, and God will recognize his own.”
The Holy Office of the Inquisition was then invented to finish things off. The Cathar religion disappeared except for cult fans like Alastair Crowley and the Dan Brown of the DaVinci Code.

1520- Pope Leo X tells little monk Martin Luther he has sixty days to knock off all this Reformation stuff and stop complaining, or he's going to excommunicate his butt!

1559- Queen Elizabeth I was crowned at Westminster Abbey. The daughter of Anne Boylen and Henry VIII was 25 and reigned 42 years. Only Queen Victoria and the current Queen Elizabeth II reigned longer.

1793- The Convention of the French Revolution condemned their King Louis XVI (now called simply “citizen Capet”) to death by guillotine. Voters for the death penalty included the artist Jean Jacques David, American Thomas Paine and Louis’ own younger brother the Duc D’Orleans, now ridiculously renamed Philippe Egalite’. When Philippe arrived home that night, his family shunned him. He cried aloud:” What else could I do?
Philippe later was guillotined too.

1811- In a secret session, the US Congress approved a plan to get Florida away from Spain.

1829- The first of two commercial working railroad locomotives arrived in the U.S. from England. Named the Pride of Newscastle back home, it was renamed the America. The Stourbridge Lion followed in May. These two trains began the U.S. Railroad system.
Historian Stephen Ambrose noted that until this time all of society moved at the speed of a walking horse. That George Washington and Thomas Jefferson could travel no faster than Jesus or Pharaoh Ramses did in their day. A Viennese doctor at the time said that the human body was never meant to travel faster than 35 mph. Railroads changed all that.

1861- The Abe Lincoln-hating Mayor of New York City Fernando Wood passed a non-binding resolution of secession from the United States. The pro-Southern sentiment went underground in the public outrage over the rebels firing on Fort Sumter.

1895- The Electric Strike- Brooklyn's 5,000 trolley car workers go out and hit the bricks. New York's 7th Regiment had to run the system.

1919- After World War I toppled the Kaiser, anarchy reigned in Berlin streets. Today as the Spartacist revolt was put down in Berlin, German Socialist leaders Red Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Leibknecht were dragged out of the Eden Hotel, beaten with rifle butts, then shot. Their bodies were then dumped in a dry canal.

1922- Irish troops led by IRA leader Michael Collins officially took over Dublin Castle and the Irish capitol’s administration from the British. The British commander at first upbraided Collins for being late for the ceremony. Collins said in response:” You’ve been here seven centuries and you can’t wait another seven minutes?” When the Lord Lieutenant Governor shook Collins hand and said, “I’m so happy to meet you!” Collins smiled,” The hell ya are.”

1927- The Dumbarton Bridge carried the first auto traffic across San Francisco Bay.

1929- Most of the nations of the world sign the Kellogg-Briand Pact, which stated that War is a bad thing. Ten years later World War II breaks out.

1935-The Tsuni Conference- Chinese Communists confirm Mao Tse Tung (or Mao ZseDong) as their overall leader.

1936-THE DGA- Several top Hollywood directors including Lewis Milestone, Ruben Mamoulian and William Wellman met at King Vidor’s house and pledged $100 dollars each to form the Screen Director’s Guild, later the Director’s Guild of America. It was a risky thing to do, previous attempts to form a director’s union were broken up with threats by the producers of a perpetual blacklisting. Final recognition and contracts were signed by President Frank Capra in 1940. One provision insisted on in the contract was that the director’s credit be the final name in the opening titles before the movie began. And so it remains.

1942- THE GREEN LIGHT LETTER. Major League Baseball Commissioner Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis wrote Roosevelt that in light of the Pearl Harbor attack, asking if the league play should cease until the war ended.
The president responded in what’s known as “the green light letter,” encouraging Landis to move forward with the 1942 baseball season. “I honestly feel that it would be best for the country to keep baseball going,” Roosevelt wrote. “There will be fewer people unemployed and everybody will work longer hours and harder than ever before. And that means that they ought to have a chance for recreation and for taking their minds off their work even more than before.”

1943- Walt Disney released Education for Death, a wartime short directed by Clyde Geromini and animated principally by Ward Kimball.

1943- The Pentagon completed. First conceived as a medical research facility, it grew to become the headquarters of the massive US Military Industrial Complex, the largest office building in the world. The supervisor of construction was General Leslie Grove, who was also head of the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos.

1945- As the Nazi war effort was caving in on all sides Adolph Hitler relocated his headquarters from East Prussia to the Reichchancellory building in Berlin. One SS major cracked up der Fuhrer by joking that “now we can take a street car from the Western Front to the Eastern Front.”

1947-”THE BLACK DAHLIA”- One of the most lurid murder cases in Los Angeles history. A little girl playing in a vacant lot discovered the remains of high priced prostitute Elisabeth Short, 22, who used to work the Biltmore Hotel. She was named the Black Dahlia because of the black pullover sweaters and black lingerie she favored. Her body had been sawed in half and completely drained of blood, and the initials 'BD' carved on her thigh. Her body showed signs of torture. The murderer was never found. The incident was the basis for a movie called “True Confessions” with Robert DeNiro and Robert Duval. The last detective on the case died in 2003.

1949- Chinese Communist armies captured the city of Tientsin after an all day battle with Nationalist forces.

1951- ILSE, THE SHE-WOLF OF THE SS. Ilse Koch was the wife of the commandant of Buchenwald Concentration Camp and every bit as sadistic as her husband. She participated in experiments on inmates to turn them into soap, and their skin into lampshades. On this day in her second war crimes trial she was sentenced to life imprisonment. Sixteen years later in 1967 she committed suicide in prison. In the 70’s Roger Corman revived interest in her by creating a sexploitation film about her life. The director of the film said of the screenplay, “That was the sickest piece of crap I ever read.”

1960- Walt Disney Presents Leslie Neilsen as Revolutionary War guerrilla Francis Marion in the adventure series Swamp Fox.

1967- THE FIRST SUPER BOWL- After a decade of professional football conference title games, the AFL and NFL combined to make a single championship game- Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 35-10.

1968- Jeanette Rankin, the 87year old Congresswoman who voted against US participation in World War I and World War II, today led a protest against the Vietnam War.

1974- The first episode of Happy Days premiered with Ron Howard as Richie Cunningham and Henry Winkler as Da Fonz.

1983- Meyer Lansky, the elderly retired Mafia boss denied a visa to move to Israel, died of a terminal nosebleed.

1998- Investigators from special counsel Kenneth Starr’s office have their first meeting with President Bill Clinton’s tootsie Monica Lewinsky in the lobby of the Watergate Hotel. They tried to pressure the 25 year old to admit her affair. They verbally denigrated her when she asked that her lawyer or her mother be present. But the Babe from Beverly Hills High was smart. She held out for 8 months to get the immunity deal she wanted before speaking about Bill and those well-placed cigars.

2009- Capt. Sully Sullenberger safely ditched his disabled airliner in the Hudson River, saving all his passengers.

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Yesterday’s Question: Who said: “ there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns -- the ones we don't know we don't know."

Answer: George W. Bush’s Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.


Jan 14, 2020
January 14th, 2020

Quiz: Who said: “ there are known-knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns -- the ones we don't know we don't know."

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Who was ROY GBIV?
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History for 1/14 /2020
Birthdays: Marc Anthony 82BC, Dr. Albert Schweitzer, Benedict Arnold, Faye Dunaway is 79, Hal Roach, Richard F. Outcault, Cecil Beaton, John Dos Passos, Lawrence Kasdan, Guy Williams, Andy Rooney, Julian Bond, Steven Soderbergh is 57, LL Cool J, Emily Watson is 53

350AD. The feast day of Saint Hilary of Poitiers- Saint Hilary was the father of church music. In exile in Phyrgia, he noticed pagans sang hymns to their gods, so he composed the first Christian music. The Halleluiah Chorus, Ave Maria, and “Drop Kick Me Jesus Through the Goalposts of Heaven” would follow in due time.

1604- King James I of England thought he could be like Roman Emperor Constantine, and use his royal prestige to resolve the theological disputes dividing Christianity. This day he convened at Hampton Court a grand synod of Anglican Bishops, Presbyterians, Baptists, Calvinists, Anabaptists, and Puritans to try and settle their differences. Nothing was really solved, but the only positive step was a motion was made to create a standardized translation of the Bible into English- The King James Edition.

1639- The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, the first constitution for a colony, is established. The Connecticut territory was a disputed area between the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam and the English New Englanders until the English conquest of 1661. The personal intervention of the Duke of York prevented Long Island from being made part of Connecticut.

1699- The Pilgrims of Salem hold a day of fasting and prayer to atone for any people they may have unjustly tortured and executed as witches.

1797- Battle of Rivoli. Napoleon defeats the Austrians in Italy.

1831- Victor Hugo’s novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame first published.

1858- Italian terrorists throw three bombs at French Emperor Napoleon III’s carriage outside the Paris Opera. 8 killed and 158 wounded, but not the Imperial family.

1893- After Britain’s Liberal party broke up over the Irish Question, the independent Labor Party was founded.

1900- Giacomo Puccini's opera "Tosca" premiered in Rome.

1914- Henry Ford's assembly line process for building cars accelerates car production, thanks to a new chain system pulling the chassis along as they are worked on. As the system got faster and faster the older, slower workers were replaced by younger ones. Hair dye sold at a premium in Detroit.

1943- Churchill and Roosevelt hold a summit meeting in Casablanca in North Africa. The Casablanca Declaration bound the allies to never negotiate less than a total surrender out of the Axis powers. It was felt that one of the reason Germany resorted to war only twenty years after the last World War was their denial that they were ever defeated.
At one point Churchill made a number of American diplomats and staff climb a high tower in the Casbah because he thought the setting sun would make a smashing good watercolor painting.

1952-The NBC "Today" show debuts with Dave Garroway, Jim Fleming and J. Fred Muggs the chimp.

1954- actress Marilyn Monroe married baseball star Joe DiMaggio.

1957- British Prime Minister Anthony Eden resigned, citing ill health, but more likely because he bungled The Suez Crisis.

1957- Humphrey Bogart died of esophageal cancer at age 57. When he was buried at Forrest Lawn, wife Lauren Bacall put in with his ashes a solid gold whistle inscribed with the famous line from "To Have and To Have Not"- 'If you ever need me, just whistle.' The group of friends around Bogie and Bacall were nicknamed ‘The Rat Pack”.
After Bogart’s death Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin made the Rat Pack famous.

1964- Hanna- Barbera's ' The Magilla Gorilla' cartoon show.

1967- HIPPIES! The first “ Human Be-In” in Golden Gate Park. The Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead performed. Allan Ginsburg, Ram Dass and Timothy Leary spoke. LSD was laced into turkey sandwiches, and soon the crowd of 30,000 was high. The national media played up the event, and the rest of America first saw the power of the Hippy youth culture, and heard the word like “psychedelic” and Timothy Leary saying “ Tune in, Turn on, Drop out.” It was the prelude to the Summer of Love.

1972- Norman Lear’s hit TV comedy series Sanford & Son premiered. Starring Red Fox, it was based on the English show Steptoe & Son.

2004- Trying to channel JFK, President George W. Bush declared in his State of the Union speech his intention to return America to the Moon by 2020 and make a manned landing on Mars by 2030. To do this he gave NASA only one billion dollars more than their regular budget, while at the same time allocating $1.5 billion to fight gay marriage initiatives. In 2017 President Trump made a similar pledge to go to Mars. We’ll see.

2005- The Cassini-Huygens Probe landed on Saturn’s moon Titan.
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Yesterday’s Question: Who is ROY GBIV?

Answer: He is the way art and science students are taught to remember the color order of the spectrum- Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet.


Jan 13, 2020
January 13th, 2020

Quiz: Who was ROY GBIV?

Answer to yesterday’s question below: What is a sultana?
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HISTORY FOR 1/13/2020
Birthdays: Salmon P. Chase, Horatio Alger-1834, Sophie Tucker, Gwen Verdon, Robert Stack, Charles Nelson Reilly, Rip Taylor, Brandon Tartikoff, Julie Louise Dreyfus is 59, T. Bone Burnett, Patrick Dempsey, Orlando Bloom is 43

565A.D. THE NIKA SEDITION- In Constantinople, like Rome before her, the big spectator sport was chariot racing. Fans went crazy, lots of money wagered and charioteers were celebrities. Chariots were raced in teams like modern race cars (Team Unser, Team Ferrari etc.) and were distinguished by their colors. The big teams were the Blues and Greens. The Whites and the Reds were kind of second tier. They even had their own booster clubs, who carried their arguments into the streets and beat each other up.
On this day the hooliganism of the booster clubs got so out of hand that they rioted in the streets and burned down half of Constantinople. Emperor Justinian had to bring in the legions to restore order. The fan clubs were called in Latin FACTIOS, from where we get the words "fan, factions and fanatic".

1687- Father Eusebio Kino began his missionary work in the Spanish Southwest. He founded several missions in Arizona and helped introduce the horse, pairs of whom were brought over from Spain and released around Santa Fe to multiply in the wild. The Italian born Jesuit’s travels also proved that California was not a big island as previously thought.

1733- James Oglethorpe reached Charleston South Carolina with a large contingent of colonists plucked from prisons back in England. His goal was to sail down to the Savannah River and create a new colony to stand as a buffer state between Spanish Florida and the English holdings. He called his new colony after King George- Georgia.

1777- Virginia Governor Thomas Jefferson signed a bill in the legislature banning sodomy. The penalty for conviction was castration.

1847- Gen. Andres Pico signed the capitulation of Campo de Cahuenga (the little park across from Universal studios today), surrendering the northern Mexican state of Alta-California to U.S. Gen. John Fremont. Fremont, nicknamed "The Pathfinder", was the first Republican candidate for President in 1856, and when the Civil War began he was a General until the Confederates made a fool of him and he dropped from public view. During the Civil War Andres Pico served in the Yankee force that defeated an attempted Confederate invasion of California. I guess he figured one change of flag in a lifetime was enough.

1849- Battle of Chillianwallah. The British army under Lord Hugh Gough defeated the Sikh army of Sher Singh and conquered the Punjab. Gough was a blunt old style soldier. When his second mentioned the army was almost out of cannonballs, Gough responded:” Good! Then we shall be at them with the bayonet!” This was the first battle where common soldiers’ bravery was “mentioned in dispatches” by the commander. At one point a befuddled major issued the wrong orders to a key troop of cavalry who would have galloped away from the battle, but they were rallied by their chaplain. For his bravery, Lord Gough recommended the chaplain be promoted to Brevet-Bishop.

1854- The modern Accordion is patented by Anthony Faas. Polka fans rejoice!

1864- Stephen Foster, the composer of "My Old Kentucky Home" and "Camptown Races" was found dead, a penniless drunk in New York's Bowery slum. In his hands was a piece of paper with the words "Dear friends and gentle hearts... ". A Pennsylvania Yankee, despite writing a lot of music about the South, he only visited it once, to New Orleans in 1852.

1872- GRANDDUKE ALEXIS BUFFALO HUNT. Grand Duke Alexis the son of the Czar of Russia visited America. A sportsman, He expressed a desire to go out West and hunt buffalo. The US Government ordered General Custer and Buffalo Bill to afford him every courtesy. Buffalo Bill even talked Sioux Chief Spotted Tail to move his tribe’s winter encampment 100 miles south so Alexis could experience real wild Indians. Starting today the hunting party hunted and feasted for two weeks leaving behind a trail of champagne bottles and buffalo carcasses. The trip was a great success and Buffalo Bill realized there was big money to be made in giving fancy foreigners a taste of the Wild West…

1895- Oscar Wilde’s play The Ideal Husband, premiered in London.

1898- Under the banner headline "J'Accuse !", a Paris newspaper printed writer Emile Zola's stinging criticism of the French government's handling of the Dreyfus scandal, blowing the whole scandal wide open. It charged Dreyfus was scapegoated to take the wrap for informants higher up in the Army General Staff. The army sued Zola for libel, and he went into exile to avoid imprisonment. He returned one year later after an enquiry cleared Dreyfus.

1906- The first ad for a radio appeared in an American Science Magazine. It boasted an effective range of over one mile !

1910- Dr. Lee Deforest, experimenting with his new radio vacuum tubes broadcast singers from New York's Metropolitan Opera for the first time. The regular Texaco 'Live from the Met' broadcasts wouldn't get going until 1934.

1914- Folksinging union organizer Joe Hill was arrested in Utah on trumped up murder charges.

1925- THE FIRST CALIFORNIA GURU- Indian spiritual teacher Paramahansa Yogananda , then called “The Swami” settled in Los Angeles and gave his first lecture to an audience in LA Philharmonic Hall. He taught westerners about these new things called Yoga and Meditation. He was a cause celeb, with friends like Luther Burbank, Armelita Galli-Curci, and the Barrymores. His Autobiography of a Yogi became a bestseller, read by the folks like Steve Jobs.
He founded the Malibu Self-Realization Center in 1950. It featured one shovel-full of ashes from the funeral pyre of Mahatma Gandhi.

1929- Wyatt Earp died at 82 of prostate cancer in Los Angeles. After careers as a gunfighter, buffalo hunter, Dodge City marshal, prizefight referee, Yukon gold prospector and faroe dealer he finished in L.A. speculating in real estate. He liked to stroll onto Hollywood western movie sets to give advice to Tom Mix and William S. Hart on how they did it in the Old West. He was buried in San Francisco's Jewish Cemetery because his third wife, ex-saloongirl Sadie Marcus was of that faith. On the subject of the Gunfight of the OK Corral in 1881 he told so many different versions of what happened that his account is considered unreliable. But no one denied that in all his gunfights he was never even scratched.
Wyatt Earp would have died totally forgotten but in his last years he was interviewed by a journalist named Stuart Lake who published a best selling biography in 1931 called Wyatt Earp, Frontier Marshal. After that the movies and TV took up his name to make him the most famous lawman in western history, which would have been a surprise to him.

1930- The Mickey Mouse comic strip first appeared in US newspapers. Walt Disney himself wrote them, Ub Iwerks penciled and Winn Smith inked.

1939- Col. Jacob Ruppert died, the brewing tycoon and owner of the NY Yankees during their glory years of Ruth, and Gerig. His will left his millions to a chorus girl. She said “ they were just friends.”

1943- Movie star Frances Farmer was dragged out of a Hollywood hotel in a straightjacket. She screamed Rats! Rats! and listed her occupation on her arrest record as “c**ksucker”. Her career was ruined and she spent years in asylums. But it’s inconclusive whether she had actually suffered mental illness, or it was her mother overreacting to her sullen, temperamental nature.

1945- Sergei Prokoviev’s 5th Symphony (Classical) premiered in Moscow.

1946- In his comic strip, Dick Tracy first uses his two-way wrist radio.

1947- The comic strip “Steve Canyon”, by Milt Caniff first premiered in newspapers.

1953-" The Doctor's Plot"- Aging Soviet dictator Josef Stalin decided to launch a new purge and shoot and imprison thousands of people. He announced he had uncovered a conspiracy of counter revolutionists and spies to bribe doctors to poison top Soviet officials. Luckily Stalin died before he could kick off his new terror campaign. As he lay stricken with a stroke on his deathbed, his doctors were too afraid to treat him.

1957-THE FRISBEE went into production today. Two World War II fighter pilots who met in a German prison camp, Warren Fransconi and Walter Morrison, invented the plastic platter in a San Luis Obisbo home. Originally called Flying Saucers and Pluto’s Platters, they got the name Frisbee when they demonstrated it at Yale University. The students there were used to flipping pie platters at each other from the local Frisbee Pie Company, so when they played with the new disc, they cried “Frisbee, Frisbee!” which seemed to Walter a better name.
When Walt Morrison died in 2002, his family obeyed his last request, to have his body cremated, his ashes mixed with plastic, and molded into a Frisbee.

1958- Actress Jayne Mansfield married weightlifter Mickey Hargitay. Their daughter was Marisa Hargitay.

1962- In the wee hours of a rainy night, TV pioneer Ernie Kovacs died when he plowed his Corvair into a power pole at Beverly Glen and Santa Monica Blvd. He was attending a baby shower Billy Widler threw for Milton Berle and his wife. But it was also known that Ernie had a weakness for vodka and orange juice. At the funeral, the pastor said Ernie wanted his life summed up like this,” "I was born in Trenton, New Jersey in 1919 to a Hungarian couple. I've been smoking cigars ever since."

1979- The Young Men’s Christian Association filed a lawsuit against the rock group the Village People over their hit song “YMCA”.

1979- Russian animator Yuri Norstein’s masterpiece Tale of Tales premiered.

1985- Carol Wayne, an actress who played bimbo blonde roles on shows like Johnny Carson, drowned while swimming in Mexico. She was 41.

2002- Pres. George W. Bush almost choked to death on a pretzel, while alone watching football on TV.

2011- The huge Italian luxury cruise liner Casta Concordia ran aground on rocks off the coast of Umbria and capsized, killing 200. The captain of the ship was not present when the ship was in crisis because he was in his cabin with a hot Venezuelan woman. After the crash, he left his sinking ship early and was seen in town when everyone else was still trying to rescue survivors. He was jailed.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: What is a sultana?

Answer: A sultana was a sultan’s wife, also a seedless dried grape made into raisins. Originating in Turkey.


Jan 12, 2020
January 12th, 2020

QUIZ: What is a sultana?

Answer to yesterdays question below: People say Pres. Trump is looking for a “ Reichstag Fire” moment. What does that mean?
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History for 1/12/2020
Birthdays: Pilgrim leader John Winthrop, Charles Perrault (Mother Goose), John Hancock, Edmund Burke, John Singer Sargent, Jack London, James Farmer the founder of CORE, Herman Goering, "Smokin' Joe" Frazier, Tex Ritter, Martin Agronsky, Howard Stern is 65, Rush Limbaugh, Oliver Platt is 60, Wayne Wang, Tiffany, Kirstie Alley is 64, Disney Animator John Sibley, John Lasseter is 63

Festival of Sarasvati –the Hindu Goddess of Wisdom.

1493- All Jews ordered to leave Sicily.

1519- Vasco Nunez de Balboa, Spanish discoverer of the Pacific, was convicted of treason, rebellion and mistreatment of Indians and beheaded. The cause was probably more that the local colonial governor Pedro de Arias hated him.

1641- The Virginia Colony passed a law that if any Indian committed a crime, the first Indian seen, even if he was completely innocent, would be compelled to pay his fine.

1669- Buccaneer Henry Morgan convened a meeting of the Captains of the Coast, a meeting of pirates on board his frigate the Oxford. In their meeting they resolved to attack Cartagena Columbia, a rich Spanish port and staging area for Spanish treasure galleons. During the drunken celebrations someone fired a gun off in the Oxford’s powder magazine and the ensuing explosion killed 200. Arrr..!

1800- The frigate USS Experiment was attacked by ten pirate ships off Hispaniola.

1809- A group of Viennese businessmen convinced Ludwig Van Beethoven not to move to another city by paying him a yearly allowance. Beethoven constantly worried about money and pleaded poverty, yet after his death people found thousands of silver coins hidden in little pots and cupboards throughout his home. He used to charge people three marks to look at him through his window while he composed.

1812- The first Mississippi steamboat brought a cargo of cotton bales from Natchez to New Orleans to be loaded onto a transatlantic ship. This is the beginning of the riverboat trade Mark Twain made famous.

1898- Nationalist riots broke out in the Spanish colony of Cuba. U.S. President McKinley sent the battleship Maine to Havana harbor to protect American interests. Americans have coveted Cuba since James Madison's time. Just before the Civil War broke out, Southern businessmen paid mercenaries to conquer Cuba from Spain and bring her into the union as a new slave state. The U.S. threatened Spain with war over Cuba in 1870 and 1874 as well.

1928- NY police raid Alfred Knopf publishing offices, and seized 852 copies of the novel “The Well of Loneliness” by Radclyffe Hall, because it was thought to turn girls into lesbians!

1928- Henry Grey and Ruth Snyder are electrocuted in Sing-Sing Prison for the murder of Mrs. Snyder's husband. The love triangle was the inspiration for the films 'Double Indemnity, The Postman Always Rings Twice' and 'Body Heat". Press photographer Thomas Howard taped a small camera to his ankle and snapped a photo of Mrs Snyder frying in the chair. The New York Daily News published the photo on its front page.

1942- German submarine U-123 torpedoed the American tanker S.S. Norness right outside the entrance to New York Harbor. The incident sent panic up and down the Eastern seaboard. The New York Museum of Natural History even moved its Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton to Pittsburgh, to save it from Nazis attack.

1945- To the overture of thousands of heavy cannons and Katyusha rockets the Red army crossed the Vistula river in Poland and began its final offensive against the Third Reich. This would end with Hitler’s death and the fall of Berlin. The nickname the multiple firing Katyushas was “Stalin’s Pipe Organs”.

1945- Japan signed licensing contracts and received from Nazi Germany their plans for jet fighters. Work was begun on a Japanese version of the Messerschmidt ME 262, the worlds’ first jet fighter, but they were too late to affect the wars end. The first Japanese fighter jet flew over Tokyo on Aug 6th,1945, the same day Hiroshima was A-bombed.

1960-” The Scent of Mystery”- the first film in Smell-O-Vision.

1962- President John F. Kennedy signed Executive order 10988, mandating federal workers had the right to join unions and bargain collectively. In 2001 in the trauma over 9-11, President George W. Bush demanded his newly organized 50,000 member Department of Homeland Security be forbidden to unionize.

1965- NBC TV premiered Hullabaloo, a Rock & Roll dance show with lots of mini-skirted go-go dancers. ABC responded with Shindig.

1966- Holy Cult Classic! The TV show "Batman" with Adam West and Burt Ward premiered.

1969- Super Bowl III at the Orange Bowl, Broadway Joe Namath and the underdog NY Jets upset the Baltimore Colts led by the legendary Johnny Unitas 16-7.

1970- The Boeing 747 makes it’s first flight.

1970- The Biafran Civil War ended.

1971- “ ALL IN THE FAMILY” Norman Lear's TV sitcom about racism and the 60's, debuted. Based on a successful British show Steptoe and Son, it broke new ground for American sitcoms by frankly discussing race working class prejudice, menopause, rape and other taboo subjects. The first show featured the sound of a toilet flushing. The networks were so worried about its explosive content ABC rejected the show twice, and CBS ran the first episodes with a long apologetic disclaimer. Carrol O’Connor, the actor who played Archie Bunker, was so convinced the show would flop, he demanded as part of his contract a round trip plane ticket home. The show ran for 13 years, a bushel of Emmy Awards and made Archie Bunker famous.

1971- Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan, nun Sister Elizabeth McAllister and several others were indicted in Federal court for conspiracy. The Catholic clerics were trying to bring an end to the Vietnam War through non-violent acts of civil disobedience. After handcuffing themselves to missiles and the gates of army bases the government alleged their scheme was to kidnap top Nixon diplomat Henry Kissinger and sabotage the State Department heating systems in the dead of winter. All charges were eventually overturned.

1987- No mystery, Agatha Christie died at 88 of natural causes.

1995- Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen announced the name of their new partnership would be 'Dreamworks SKG'. Someone in Florida immediately bought the domain name “Dreamworks.com” and waited for their buyout offer. I heard it was $5,000.

1997-According to Arthur C. Clarkes 1968 book "2001, a Space Odyssey", the HAL-9000 computer was booted up today.

1998-The LEWINSKY SCANDAL- Former White House staffer Linda Tripp was frustrated her career in the Clinton Administration was going nowhere. This day she appeared in the office of independent special prosecutor Kenneth Starr with tape recordings she secretly made of her friend Monica Lewinsky. They admitted to a sexual affair with the President. Conservative Judge Starr had been investigating Slick-Willie Clinton for years. After spending $54 million tax dollars, he hadn’t found much. So he immediately leaped at this opportunity, and asked the Attorney General for an extension of his mandate.
Ms. Lewinsky had meant to keep her affair a secret, despite telling 11 friends. By autumn, the resultant scandal brought Washington to a standstill and only the second presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history. President Clinton first lied, then admitted to the affair, but was acquitted and served out his term anyway. Then Linda Tripp asked the public for donations for her legal defense fund for her violating federal wiretap laws “I am one of you...a David against a Goliath...Even $1,000 dollars would do..” She took the money and got a facelift.

2001- The Cohen Bros film Oh, Brother Where Art Thou? Goes into general release.

2002-The Refusenik Movement began in Israel when 53 Israeli Army officers announced they refused to enforce the Likud Government’s policy in the West Bank & Gaza.
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Yesterdays’ Question: People say Pres. Trump is looking for a “ Reichstag Fire” moment. What does that mean?

Answer: In 1933, Dutch communist Marinus van der Lubbe set fire to the German parliament. It was never proved if he even did it, but Chancellor Hitler and his cronies used the fire to claim a Bolshevik-style coup was looming and used the panic to vote himself dictatorial powers.
Today a "Reichstag Fire” is synonymous with a “false flag,” operation; an event staged to create the perception that some entity is responsible for an activity, usually nefarious, but that, in reality allows the actual perpetrators to benefit.


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