May 14th, 2008 weds
May 14th, 2008

Quiz: What is a raccoon called in Algonquin?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: What is a sofa called in Spanish?
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History for 5/14/2008
Birthdays: Thomas Gainsborough, George Lucas , Thomas Wedgewood, Francesca Annis, David Byrne, Jack Bruce, Bobby Darin, Tim Roth is 47, Robert Zemeckis is 57, Kate Blanchett is 39, Amber Tamblyn

1667- At this time, the sailors of the English Navy were only paid once a month. During the Dutch Wars, an incident happened when the loyal sailors were told after several months of hard fighting, that their fun loving King Charles II didn't have any money left in his treasury to pay them. The tars were so angry, scores of them deserted to the enemy. They guided Dutch Admiral De Ruyter's fleet right up the Thames where they could burn the docks of Greenwich, within sight of King Charles' palace.

1787- Shortly before returning to America the Marquis de Lafayette wrote his friend George Washington about his backing the famous quack doctor Anton Mesmer, for whom Mesmerism is known. "Before leaving I shall obtain permission to tell Dr Mesmer’s great secrets on Animal Magnetism to you, for it is a great philosophical discovery."

1787- George Washington arrives in Philadelphia to chair the great Convention to write the U.S. Constitution. Once there, he discovered that so only three states had even bothered to show up, and that included host Pennsylvania. There was a fear that if enough states could not be made to cooperate, a federal constitution imposed by a minority would break up the United States. To Washington’s relief by months end all the states except Rhode Island sent a delegation.

1796- English scientist Edward Jenner administered the first smallpox vaccination. This disease, which ravaged Europe for decades, was cured by the Chinese in the 600's B.C. Chinese doctors would ground up particles from a smallpox scab and blow it up your nose through a glass tube. After the pox decimated Native American tribes in the 1500's, by the 1770’s they did the same vaccination using a porcupine quill under the fingernail.
Small pox was the great killer of the age, Queen Elizabeth, George Washington and Robespierre almost died of the pox. The fashion of wigs and makeup became popular because it covered the facial scars and hair loss from the disease. Robespierre’s eyes were permanently weakened by the pox and he had to wear black painted spectacles (the first Ray-Bans).

1800- The Sixth US Congress voted to adjourn for the last time in Philadelphia and meet again in November in the new capitol city, already being called Washington City.

1800- Napoleon’s army began crossing the Alps into Italy via the Great Saint Bernard Pass.

1804- Lewis and Clark set out from St. Louis to find the Pacific. President Jefferson had told his aide Meriwether Lewis that there was a large river headed west from the Mississippi called the Missouri. Perhaps the large river that emptied in to the Pacific in Oregon, called the Columbia, was the same river? So you could go by water from New Orleans to Seattle? And if there was a little neck of land between the two rivers they were to measure the distance. Later 1200 miles into the high Rockies eating candles to stay alive, they determined that the distance was greater than previously thought. Pres. Jefferson had a fossil bone from a prehistoric sloth in his office. He told Lewis if he found a live one out there to send it back. *Known as Paramylodon jeffersoni, remains of this animals have been found while digging the world's largest reservoir near Hemet, CA, and one specimen is known from the La Brea Tar Pits on Wilshire Blvd in downtown L.A.

1842 - 1st edition of London Illustrated News.


1878- Vaseline petroleum jelly patented.

1942- Disney composer Frank Churchill, who had written "Who’s afraid of the Big Bad Wolf" and "Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho" shot himself at the piano. Another story had him shooting himself in an onion field in Valencia that would one day be the site of Cal Arts.
One version of his story had his last words before the gun went off as " How's This Walt?" but that is a matter of legend.



1944- In the comic strip Dick Tracy, the longtime Tracy nemesis the gangster Flattop was killed.

1948- THE STATE OF ISRAEL DECLARED- Since the Jewish Diaspora begun by the Roman Emperor Hadrian in 162 AD Jews have wished for their own country. In1897 European Jews called Zionists began building a homeland by encouraging mass immigration to the loosely governed Turkish province called Palestine. By World War Two there were two populations, Arab and Jewish Immigrants, both claiming the same territory. After years of sectarian fighting the British protectorate announced they would evacuate Palestine May 15th. The 5 surrounding Arab states announced they would invade if a Jewish State was declared- 45 million against barely one million. US ally King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia declared:" Even if we lose ten million to destroy the Jews, it will be a small sacrifice." The UN was considering a further three month delay to debate the problem when at 4:00PM Jewish Agency Premier David Ben Gurion walked into the crowd at the Tel Aviv Museum and declared the State of Israel. He did it at 4:00PM and the day before the mandate ran out, because it was Friday night, which is the Jewish Sabbath. During the Sabbath no Jews can sign anything or do any business, so he had to move it up.

1951 - Ernie Kovacs Show, TV Variety debut on NBC. Kovacs was a great pioneer in the video medium who loved creating surreal images and pantomime blackout skits.

1973- Skylab, Americas first attempt at a space station, blasted off into orbit. In 1979 the remains of the 77 ton satellite fell to earth.

1974- Tha Maalot Massacre-On the anniversary of Israeli Independence Palestinian terrorists of the Al Fatah faction entered Israel at night and shot up a school, killing 22 children. Whenever Yassir Arafat tried to be taken seriously as a partner for peace, Israel would bring up this incident.

1976- Keith Relf of the rock group the Yardbirds, was electrocuted while playing his guitar in his bathtub. Wikipedia says the bathtub story is an urban legend, but it is a good story.

1968 - Beatles announce formation of Apple Records.

1998 - Last episode of sitcom Seinfeld on NBC (commercial fees were $2M for 30 seconds) Elderly singer Frank Sinatra died shortly after watching it.
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Yersterday’s Quiz: What is a sofa called in Spanish?

Answer: - sofa.


May 13th, 2008 tues
May 13th, 2008

Quiz: What is a sofa called in Spanish?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Why are Marines called Leathernecks?
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History for 5/13/2008
Birthdays: Sir Arthur Sullivan, Cyrus McCormick, Stevie Wonder, George Braque, Daphne DuMaurier, Joe Louis, Richie Valens, Gil Evans, Beatrice Arthur, Peter Gabriel, Harvey Keitel, Dennis Rodman

In ancient Rome this was the Liberalia, Festival of the gods of the Grape- Liber and Liberia. As part of the fertility theme people waved little carved phalluses or wore them around their necks to parties. Putting a big carved phallus in your garden was a sure way to make your flowers bloom. Is Martha Stewart reading this? I gotta admit, it would have been difficult to watch epic movies like Quo Vadis, if Robert Taylor and Jean Simmons were trying to act with a large stone wiener standing over them.

1637-French Cardinal Richelieu threw a dinner where he introduced a novel invention. He had each place at the table set with a fork, a spoon and a table knife. Guests didn't have to whip out their own blade to cut their food.

1846-THE U.S. DECLARES WAR ON MEXICO- The U.S had claimed the border of it’s new state of Texas was the Rio Grande, Mexico said it was the Rio Nueces. When American General Zachary Taylor was ordered to march his army into the disputed area and was attacked, the United States declared War. America won the Rio Grande line as well as the new states of California, New Mexico and Arizona, basically half the landmass of Mexico. Just in case you thought political dissent began with Vietnam; Daniel Webster said this war was unworthy of America for it could not be disguised as other than a old world-style imperial land grab for the Pacific coast. Henry Clay and Abraham Lincoln were anti-war congressman. Ulysses Grant said in his memoirs that the Civil War was God's punishment on the U.S. for attacking Mexico. Henry David Thoreau refused to pay his taxes and was fined, later writing his famous work On Civil Disobedience.

1910- James "Sugar Jim” Smith, the boss of the Essex County Democratic machine announced his candidate for the New Jersey governor’s race would be a tall, sour-puss Presbyterian professor named Woodrow Wilson, then President of Princeton University. Wilson had never run or held elective office and everyone thought they were out of their minds, until they heard him speak. Woodrow Wilson not only won the governorship but two years later became U.S. president.

1913- In Saint Petersburg Igor Sikorsky invented the first airplane toilet. Later he would move to the US and invent the helicopter. Without a toilet though..

1917- Three small children see the Virgin Mary in the town of Fatima in Portugal. All Catholics know about the story that the Madonna gave a letter to the Pope which was to be opened 50 years later which revealed secrets about the fate of mankind too horrible to say.

1950 - Diner's Club issued it’s first credit cards.

1956- Actor Montgomery Clift was disfigured in a car crash. He had to have his jaw wired until it could heal.

1957- THE MAIN BOUT- The McClellan Senate Committee was investigating organized crime inroads into the labor unions, but the "main bout" as it was then called was young prosecutor Robert Kennedy’s attempts to nail Teamster boss Jimmy Hoffa. This day RFK tried a sting on Hoffa, arresting him at the Dupont Circle Hotel in Washington with $21,000 in kickback money handed him by an FBI plant. Hoffa’s attorney portrayed the money as a misunderstood legal fee and when he noticed half the jury was black Jimmy Hoffa had boxing champ Joe Louis flown in so they could see them embracing. Hoffa was acquitted in this trial but eventually convicted ten years later. When Bobby Kennedy was assassinated Hoffa ordered the flag over his office run back up to full staff and spent the day celebrating. His son James Hoffa Jr is current teamster president.

1965 - Rolling Stones record "Satisfaction".

1966 - Rolling Stones release "Paint it Black".

1982- President Reagan says he's certain that our nuclear missiles could be recalled in case of an accidental firing .He didn't say how we'd catch them when they came back.

1981-Pope John Paul II shot and almost killed by Turkish-Terrorist Mehmed Ali Agca.
It’s never been proven conclusively whether the hit on the Polish Pope was organized by the Soviet KGB through the Bulgarian secret service, or that Agca was a lone nut. Another source said the in 2001 the Vatican revealed that a prediction of the assassination attempt on the Pope was part of the secret message given by the Virgin Mary to three small Portuguese children at Fatima in 1917.

1992- Police arrest the manager of Comic Book Heaven in Sarasota Florida on seven counts of "displaying material harmful to minors", i.e. comic books.
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Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Why are Marines called Leathernecks?

Answer: When the US Marine uniform was reformed from the old Revolutionary Army, they were given a stiff leather collar “ to keep the head erect in a proper military bearing.” Hence the sobriquet Leathernecks.


May 12th, 2008 mon
May 12th, 2008

Quiz: Why are Marines called Leathernecks?

Yesterday’s Question Answered below: What is a Lonesome Jennie?
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History for 5/12/2008
Birthdays: Dolly Madison, Daniel Rossetti, Frank Stella, Florence Nightingale, Tom Snyder, George Carlin is 71, Wilfred Hyde-White, Emilio Estevez, Howard K. Smith, Ron Zeigler, Farley Mowatt, Ving Rhames, Bruce Boxleitner, Katherine Hepburn, Gabriel Byrne, Yogi Berra is 80

1775- During the American Revolution a New York mob carrying clubs and torches broke onto the campus of King’s College determined to lynch it’s president Miles Cooper, who was an outspoken loyalist. The mob was stopped on the steps of Cooper’s home by student Alexander Hamilton. While Cooper watched from the second story window, Hamilton begged the mob not to kill his teacher. Cooper was hard of hearing and he thought the troublemaker Hamilton was the instigator. Miles Cooper yelled down:” DON’T LISTEN TO HIM! HE’S A BLOCKHEAD!” Despite this, Miles Cooper got away unharmed. Kings College name was changed to Columbia University.

1789- TAMANY HALL BORN- The first and oldest of U.S. political machines (clubs , pacts, lobbies, whatever ) Founded in Philadelphia and moved to New York it was named for a Chief Tamamend, the Delaware chief who welcomed William Penn. The Hall on 14 th street was nicknamed the Wigwam and the leaders called Sachems, the Algonquin word for chief. Throughout the 1800's it was famous for buying and selling political offices, bribery and corruption. Boss Tweed and Slippery Dick Connolly, the first American to embezzle one million dollars, were Tamany Sachems. Tamany were the first to realize there was political power in mobilizing the mass of working class immigrants against the snooty New York power elite. Tamany Hall men would stand on docks welcoming immigrants with a voting card and a silver dollar to vote for their candidates. Another trick was for Tamany men to grow a full beard and vote, then go home, shave to a goatee, vote again, shave to a mustache, vote again, then clean shave and vote once more.
Tamany Hall was still influential into modern times. Bill O'Dwyer, a Tamany sachem was mayor of New York in the late 1940’s and in 1963 future Mayor Ed Koch became a congressman by unseating the last Tammany sachem Carmen DeSapio..

1796- Napoleon's French Republican Army occupied the city of Venice and destroyed the last traces of the independent Venetian Republic 'La Serenissima" The Most Surene Republic. The Last Doge Daniele Manin was forced to abdicate and his Byzantine crown and trappings of office were burned, along with his famous gilded barge, the 'Boucintoro'. Venice, an independent city-state since 976AD, was going to be part of Italy whether she liked it or not!

1846- The Donner Party wagon train left Independence Missouri to start it’s trek out west to California. They tried a new short cut proposed by a charlatan named Lansford Hastings to get to California. They crossing the burning alkaline deserts of Utah and were attacked by Paiute Indians. By Halloween heavy snow storms stranded the Donners in the High Sierra Mountains where the starving survivors resorted to cannibalism.

1864-BATTLE OF SPOTSYLVANIA- After Lee whips Grant in the Wilderness, instead of retreating Grant wheels around and attacks again. This time winning a draw. The fighting was dreadful, reports of trees so thick you couldn't put your arms around cut down by bullets, and men hit with so many 68 cal.musket balls at one time that their bodies literally would fall apart. At the fight in the center of the line called The Angle Yankees and Confederates crowded in so tightly they pressed against one another like a massive rugby game. Soldiers fought hand to hand with pistol butts, flag staffs, clubs, fists, some even took their empty bayonet muskets and hurled them into the crowd like a spear. Nothing failed to cause injury. One casualty was union general "Uncle John" Sedgewick, shot by rebel snipers. His last words were:" Aw go on men! Them rebs couldn't hit an elephant at this dis......." His great, great granddaughter Edie Sedgwick hung out with Andy Warhol.

1915- THE BRYCE COMISSION- An English commission to study reports of German atrocities that was really a propaganda machine aimed at getting the United States into the Great War. America had the problem that if she chose the allied side in World War One, several million immigrant citizens of German, Hungarian and Austrian descent were sympathetic to the Kaiser. Add to them millions of English-hating Irish, Jewish Americans who wanted the openly Anti-Semitic Russian Empire beaten and many average Americans who felt the main reason their forefathers crossed the ocean was to get away from the kind of trouble that occurred back in Europe. So you can see it was hard to get everyone up for intervention. The American yellow press printed all the British accounts without ever questioning their accuracy- they horrified the average reader with hair-raising stories of German troops raping and killing Belgian women, chopping the hands off of children and crucifying Canadian prisoners with bayonets through their hands and feet. Even though some atrocities stories were verified, like the needless burning of the medieval Library of Louvain -The German term was Shreiklichkeit- Rule by Fear- today it is acknowledged that most of these accounts were dressed up to get us to Hate the Hun! Later the U.S. Office of War Information took over feeding these stories to the press. It was headed by a psychiatrist Edmund Bernays, a psychoanalyst nephew of Sigmund Freud who after the war went into advertising.

1936- John Maynard Keynes most famous work "the General Theory of Money, Interest and Work" was published. Today if a politician advocates government intervention in the business market he is called a "Keynesian".Keynes once said: ' My only regret in life is that I did not drink more champagne."

1938- “The Adventures of Robin Hood” starring Errol Flynn, Basil Rathbone, Olivia DeHaviland, Claude Rains and Eugene Paulette premiered. The swashbuckling film then cost a whopping $2 million dollars to make! The light brown horse Maid Marion rode in the movie was later bought by singing cowboy Roy Rogers and renamed Trigger.

1948- In Palestine the secret key cabinet meeting of Jewish leaders over whether to declare independence before the British evacuated on May 15th. The UN and even the US was asking for a UN sponsored three month cooling off period but Jewish leaders like David Ben Gurion felt any more delay would be fatal. The decided that even though they would be attacked by five Arab nations simultaneously they would declare independence on May 14th. The last problem was what to call the new country? After Zion, Zionia and Herzelania was suggested, they decided to go with the name of a Kibbutz using an ancient Biblical name- Eretz-Israel or simply Israel.

1950- The comic strip 'Marvin' debuted.

1962- First day shooting on Frederigo Fellini’s film 8 1/2. When screened for American Producer Joe Levine, Levine took the cigar from his mouth and growled-” Frederigo, what da hell did that movie mean? ” Fellini shrugged –“I dunno”.

1971 - Rolling Stone Mick Jagger weds Bianca Macias at St Tropez Town Hall.
They later divorced and Bianca became a famous habitue’ of trendy discos and fashion magazines.

1971- Tor Johnson died of a heart attack at age 68. Swedish wrestler turned actor Tor’s preferred role was the bald eyeless zombie in classics like Plan Nine from Outer Space and Bride of the Monster.

Happy Birthday to meee...what? Oh, I'm dead? Oh...never mind....

1977- A small Westchester radio station WENW hired a thin, gawky, college grad as a DJ- Howard Stern. US radio would never be the same.

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Yesterday’s Question: What is a Lonesome Jennie?

Answer: In the middle of the night, it is the feint whistle of a far off freight train.



courtesy Andybudd.com
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Occasionally in American history, Government tries to enact dumbass laws, and we, as a responsible electorate, have to kick their butts over it. The Dredd Scott Decision of 1858, The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1881, Prohibition 1919 and now this proposed Orphaned Work law.

The problem is explained by Mark Simon in his piece in AWN.com, and with their kind permission, I quote from him:

An Orphaned Work is any creative work of art where the artist or copyright owner has released their copyright, whether on purpose, by passage of time, or by lack of proper registration. In the same way that an orphaned child loses the protection of his or her parents, your creative work can become an orphan for others to use without your permission.

Currently, you don't have to register your artwork to own the copyright. You own a copyright as soon as you create something. International law also supports this. Right now, registration allows you to sue for damages, in addition to fair value.

What makes me so MAD about this new legislation is that it legalizes THEFT! The only people who benefit from this are those who want to make use of our creative works without paying for them and large companies who will run the new private copyright registries.

These registries are companies that you would be forced to pay in order to register every single image, photo, sketch or creative work.

It is currently against international law to coerce people to register their work for copyright because there are so many inherent problems with it. But because big business can push through laws in the United States, our country is about to break with the rest of the world, again, and take your rights away.

With the tens of millions of photos and pieces of artwork created each year, the bounty for forcing everyone to pay a registration fee would be enormous. We lose our rights and our creations, and someone else makes money at our expense.

This includes every sketch, painting, photo, sculpture, drawing, video, song and every other type of creative endeavor. All of it is at risk!

If the Orphan Works legislation passes, you and I and all creatives will lose virtually all the rights to not only our future work but to everything we've created over the past 34 years, unless we register it with the new, untested and privately run (by the friends and cronies of the U.S. government) registries. Even then, there is no guarantee that someone wishing to steal your personal creations won't successfully call your work an orphan work, and then legally use it for free.

In short, if Congress passes this law, YOU WILL LOSE THE RIGHT TO MAKE MONEY FROM YOUR OWN CREATIONS!

Why is this allowed to happen? APATHY and MONEY.

Artists have apathy and corporations have money.

For the complete article, check-http://mag.awn.com/index.php?ltype=pageone&article_no=3605

I agree. As artists, we prefer to think we are better than all this squalid money and politics, so we can't be bothered. But the truth is, when we don't bother, people do things like this to cheat us. Mozart and Beethoven didn't die rich. Vermeer and Rembrandt had their things auctioned off to raise money. It's not just all about talent. We have to remain vigilant, and defend our rights as artists!

Artistas!No Pasaran!

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The Society of Illustrators, Photographers Guild, Graphic Artists Guild, The Illustrators Partnership,even the prestigious NATIONAL CARTOONISTS SOCIETY, founded by Charles Schulz and Mort Walker among others, is taking the unusual step of urging you to write Congress in opposition to the pending Orphan Works Act of 2008. If enacted, this radical legislation will undermine key elements of your copyright protection. The House and Senate have different versions of the bill, and there are likely to be some modifications, but nothing under serious consideration makes this legislation remotely acceptable.

To take action, simply click this link ( http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/ ) and select one of the form letters. We recommend the letter titled “For Visual Artists – Any Image Can Be Infringed”. All you’ll need to do is add your contact information at the bottom of the page and press “Send Message”. It’s as easy as it is important.

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Question: What is a Lonesome Jennie?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: When designing the character Speed Racer, Japanese artist Tatsuo Yoshida was inspired by an American. Who?
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History for 5/11/2008
Birthdays: Salvador Dali', Chang and Eng Bunker-the original Siamese Twins-1811, Irving Berlin, King Oliver, Martha Graham, Dr Richard Fenyman, Mort Sahl, Baron Munchausen, Jean Jerome, Phil Silvers, Foster Brooks, Denver Pyle, Henry Morgenthau, Doug McClure, Randy Quaid, Natasha Richardson, Rev Louis Farrakhan

1780- A RUDE SHOCK TO THE INDEPENDENCE OF AMERICA.- That was how it was described by a Tory minister back in London, when the British Army captured the last major American seaport- Charleston, South Carolina. Colonial General Lincoln and 2500 regulars lay down their arms, it is the largest surrender of American troops in the Revolutionary War. At one time or another during the Revolution all of the largest US cities: Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Charleston were under British occupation. The capture of Charleston also wiped out what little was left of the U.S. Navy. John Paul Jones was sitting on a beach in New Hampshire waiting for a new ship to be built. It was the French fleet, not the American, that won the Revolution at sea. Up till then the British strategy had been to wait out the bankrupt Yankees and concentrate on fighting the French and Spaniards in the Caribbean. George Washington recognized this strategy was working since Congress was broke and the unpaid Yankee Army on the verge of mutiny. But the victory at Charleston encouraged London to deviate from their plan and commit new armies to conquer America from the South. That decision led to the great British defeat at Yorktown.

1792- Captain Robert Gray discovered the Columbia River in the Oregon territory.

1812- A merchant named Bellingham who's business was ruined by the Napoleonic wars, walked into the lobby of the House of Commons, and shot Prime Minister Sir Spencer Percival. He was the only British Prime Minister ever assassinated.

1864-JEB STUART FELL- Confederate commander of cavalry Jeb Stuart was a Beau-Sabeur who always rode into the thickest of a fight. This day one soldier shouted:” General, you must love bullets!” Stuart replied:” I don’t love bullets, but I can’t hide from them. I got a feeling I’m not going to survive this war.” Then he rode into battle with Sheridan’s cavalry at Yellow Tavern six miles north of Richmond. A dismounted Yankee marksman spotted the familiar gray horseman with the black plumed hat and cape. As he rode by he emptied his carbine into him. Gutshot, Stuart still managed to ride a mile to the rear before being taken insensible from his horse. He died shortly afterwards. He was 31. Jeb Stuart loved partying and kept around him a colorful crowd that included Sweeny the banjo player, accompanied by Stuart’s manservant Bob on bones and a German aristocrat dragoon named Major Heros Von Borcke, who traveled from Prussia to fight for Dixie. Stuart called him "My dear Von". After his death Von Borcke returned to Germany where he flew the rebel Stars & Bars over his castle in Geisenbrugge in Thuringia until his own death in 1895.

1878-Young anarchist Erik Hymdel tries unsuccessfully to assassinate Kaiser Wilhelm Ist. People today fear Al Qaeda but in the "Gilded Age" 1870's to 1920's it was the Anarchist movement- the stereotypical men in broad hats and long black coats with smoldering round bombs. They believed that society itself was the problem and if it could be broken down only then would everyone be truly free. In the times mentioned they assassinated an American President -McKinley, the Tsar of Russia, the Kings of Italy and Portugal, The President of France, The Empress of Austria, took shots at Edward the Prince of Wales and dynamited countless buildings like Wall Street Banks and the Los Angeles Times. When they were executed they usually shouted "Long Live Anarchy!" at the end. Composer Richard Wagner flirted with the movement and once wrote the anarchist philosopher Bakhunin" I work for the same goal as you, namely, a World in Flames."

1945-After the Nazi Germany surrendered, the Nazi governor of occupied Norway, Josef Treboven, committed suicide by sitting on a stick of dynamite. When Wile E, Coyote does it, its funny, but Norwegian Nazis? Very messy.

1956 - Pinky Lee Show last airs on NBC-TV

1972 -On the Dick Cavett talk show Beatle and peace activist John Lennon said his phone had been tapped by FBI. It turns out it was, but at the time we all thought he was just paranoid from too many drugs.

1981- The musical play CATS opened in London.

1981- Bob Marley died of brain cancer at age 36. Jamaican Marley and his group the Whalers made Reggae mainstream in pop music around the world. Ja –Mahn!

1992 - Carlos Herrera, chef, bartender and inventor of the Margarita, died at age 90

1992- Elizabeth McDonald, inventor of the detergent cleanser Spic & Span, died at 98.

1997- Deep Blue, a computer developed at IBM, defeated top world chess champion Gennady Kasparov.
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Yesterday’s Question: When designing the character Speed Racer, Japanese artist Tatsuo Yoshida was inspired by an American. Who?

Answer: Yoshida based his design on Elvis Presley in the film Viva Las Vegas.


May 10th 2008 sat.
May 10th, 2008

Quiz: When designing the character Speed Racer, Japanese artist Tatsuo Yoshida was inspired by an American. Who?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Who were the parents of Robin the Boy Wonder?
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History for 5/10/2008
Birthdays: Fred Astaire, Sir Arthur Lipton (inventor of the teabag), Nancy Walker, John Wilkes Booth (assassin of Lincoln) Mark David Chapman (assassin of John Lennon), David O. Selznick, Ariel Durant, Jim Abrahams, Donovan, Homer Simpson,Bono is 48

1748- English slave trader John Newton’s ship was caught in a violent Mid Atlantic storm and was about to go under. When Newton prayed to God he would reform his life if he made it through this gale, the storm broke. Newton not only stopped his slave trading ways but he wrote a hymn, Amazing Grace. "Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, to Save a Wretch Like Me! I was lost, but now I’m found, etc."

1775- FT. TICONDEROGA- Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen surprise the great fortress in the dead of night and capture the cannons Washington needed to drive the British out of Boston. 20 years earlier the British took huge losses taking that same fort from the French. All the British commander lost this time was his trousers, he was captured in his nightclothes. As Allen and Arnold woke him he scowled: "By who's authority do you do this?" Allen retorted: " In the name of Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress!"

1796- THE BATTLE OF LODI- The Austrian Army in Italy attempted to slow Napoleons pursuit of them by blocking a bridge with 14 cannon and daring the French to cross. This is where the beginning of Napoleons legend among his men starts to form. He whips up the confidence of his men to the point where they enthusiastically rush across the bridge and overrun the cannon. Even though Napoleon is the army’s commander he is out in front sharing the danger from shot and shell sighting his cannon like a corporal. This is when men start to call him "The Little Corporal". He later told a friend’ They haven’t seen anything yet." Another older general said:" You know, that little bastard scares me."

1869- THE GOLDEN SPIKE- At Promontory Utah the Union Pacific and the Southern Pacific met, finally connecting the entire U.S. continent by rail. Before this when you wanted to go from New York to San Francisco you had to take a boat to Havana, then Nicaragua, take a mule train through jungle then get a third ship up the Pacific coast to California. The millionaire directors of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific came to Utah for the ceremony. The racing rail gangs had actually passed each other and had to correct a detour of 250 miles. When the rich men were called upon to swing the large sledgehammers to drive in the golden spike both missed and hit the ground -one had a hangover. A workman had to actually accomplish the deed. The link completed an electric circuit to send telegraph news of the event simultaneously to New York and San Francisco. They celebrated by the synchronized firing of cannon east over the Atlantic and west out over the Pacific, symbolically telling the world to watch out! That America was now a continental power that has got its act together.

1869- CREDIT MOBILIER SCANDAL- The stock company that handled the transcontinental railroad's budgets, Credit Mobilier, billed the government $175 million dollars for the job when it actually only cost $86 million. When the figures were disputed gov't officials were given bribes of Credit Mobilier stock to keep quiet. When the scandal finally broke in 1872 many of Republican Pres. Grant's top officials were implicated. When Vice President Schuyler Colfax was asked about a deposit slip for $10,000 marked the same day as a Credit Mobilier payroll slip made out for the same amount, he remarked it was a political donation from a benefactor whose name he couldn't remember who died shortly after anyway. He said the check fell out of his morning newspaper at breakfast.

1893- The U.S. government declares the Tomato officially a vegetable and not a fruit.

1908- The First Mother's Day celebrated, it became a national holiday in 1914. The holiday was inspiration of a lady named Anna Jarvis, who spent the rest of her life trying to keep it from being commercially exploited. She died broke and surrounded by mothers day cards sent from well wishers.

1928- General Electric starts up WG4 Schenectady, the first US T.V. Station.

1933- Nazis Leader Josef Goebbels holds the first mass book-burning in Berlin. Goebbels said: " We consign everything unGerman to the flames." 20,000 works by Thomas Mann, Hemingway, Dos Passos, Freud and Einstein are burned.

1940- British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigned. Winston Churchill took over as Prime Minister to deal with the war crisis. "I have nothing to offer except Blood, Sweat and Tears." No, he was not offering to share his old rock and roll albums, he invented the phrase.

1941- THE STRANGE FLIGHT OF RUDOLPH HESS. Rudolph Hess was Adolph Hitler’s trusted right hand and one of the top Nazis in the German Reich. This day at the height of Nazis power Hess commandeered a Messerschmidt fighter and flew alone to England. He was arrested and he claimed to have a secret mission to try and reach Churchill and negotiate peace. Hitler declared Hess had gone mad and allied leaders refused to meet with him. After the war Hess was sentenced to life in prison at Spandau. To eyewitnesses at the Nuremberg trial he did indeed appear deranged. Historians have always speculated what the secret message Hess was carrying from Hitler to Churchill. In 1991 on the 50th anniversary historians expected the secret files to at last be declassified, but the British government put them under a new top secret seal for another 100 years.

1963- On the advice of George Harrison and Little Richard, Decca Records signed a new teen band called the Rolling Stones to a recording contract.

1994- Nelson Mandela inaugurated as first black president of South Africa.

1994- Former children’s party clown and serial killer John Wayne Gacy was executed by lethal injection. Police found 28 children buried around his house. His last words: "Kiss My Ass!"

1996- DEADLIEST DAY ON MOUNT EVEREST- One dozen mountain climbers with their veteran guides and Sherpas are caught on the summit by a hurricane-like blizzard. Pinned down by 100 mile an hour winds and a wind chill of one hundred degrees below zero. They soon run out of oxygen 29,800 feet above sea level. Eight die, two blindly walked off the South Escarpment and plunged 7,000 feet. Two had to have limbs amputated from frostbite. The groups leader Rob Hall called his base camp on his cellular phone who connected him with his pregnant wife in New Zealand so he could say goodbye before dying. The climbers were doctors, lawyers and executives who paid $65,000 apiece not counting airfare and Tibetan permits. Mount Everest would claim 11 more lives that spring and seven in 1997 yet a waiting list remains of hundreds of people wanting to climb to the top of the world.
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Yesterday’s Question answered below: Who were the parents of Robin the Boy Wonder?

Answer: They were an acrobat troupe, the Flying Graysons. After mother and father were both murdered by gangsters as a warning to their circus owner to pay protection money, orphaned son Dick Grayson moved in with Bruce Wayne, aka Batman.


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