June 11th, 2010 friday
June 10th, 2010

Quiz: When was the period of English history we call Jacobean?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Who coined the term OnLine?
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History for 6/11/2010
Birthdays: Ben Johnson, Richard Strauss, Jacques Cousteau, Nelson Mandela, Bartolomeo Vanzetti, Joe Montana, John Constable, Gustav Courbet, Vince Lombardi, Adrienne Barbeau, William Styron, Chad Everett, race car driver Jackie Stewart, Gene Wilder is 77, Hugh Laurie is 51, Shia LeBoeuf is 24.

1174- Crusader king of Jerusalem Amalric IV dies, he is succeeded by his son Baldwin IV the "Leper King of Jerusalem". That this disease afflicted Baldwin did not stop him from marrying (unconsummated) and fighting battles -no one would get close enough to fight with him. Ed Norton played him in the Ridley Scott film Kingdom of Heaven.


1685- MONMOUTH'S REBELLION- The Duke of Monmouth, the illegitimate son of English King Charles II felt he should be king instead of his prissy Roman Catholic Uncle King James II. Being illegitimate was to him a mere technicality. This day The Duke of Monmouth landed in the U.K. and raised the banner of revolt. He got some of Oliver Cromwell’s old roundheads to join him but they were soon crushed by the regular army. Monmouth was executed and many of his men shipped off to be slaves on the sugar plantations of Bermuda and the Bahamas by the infamous Judge Jeffries during the Bloody Assizes. The novel Captain Blood is about one such slave-survivor of Monmouth's Rising.

1775- 33 year old Virginia planter Thomas Jefferson leaves Monticello to ride to Philadelphia where the representatives of all the colonies were gathering in a Congress to decide how to respond to the violence lately broken out between Americans and British troops around Boston.

1790- In Hawaii this is King Kamehameha day in honor of the king who united all the Hawaiian Islands under one rule.

1809- The Pope excommunicated Napoleon. "Good," he said, "This will bring me even more followers."

1913- Turkish Grand Vizier Shevket Pasha was assassinated by revolutionaries. The Young Turk officers had the conspirators rounded up and hanged.

1928 - Alfred Hitchcock's film, "The Case Of Jonathan Drew," is released

1934- the first Mandrake the Magician comic strip.

1936- Shy, quiet, 30 year old Texas writer Robert E. Howard had created the macho warriors Conan the Barbarian, Kull and single handedly defined the genre we call Sword & Sorcery. This day after he learned his mother was dying and would never regain consciousness, he went into his garage and blew his brains out. Some say he had an Oedipal fixation, others that he always intended to end his life and was waiting to spare his mother the pain. On his typewriter he left a short message: "All fled, all done, so lift me upon the pyre. The feast is over and let the lamps expire."


1937 –" Getta’ yu tutsie-frutsie Ice-a Creem!"the Marx Brothers' "A Day At The Races" premiered.

1939 – President Franklin Roosevelt hosted King George VI and Queen Elizabeth at the White House. There the rulers of the British Empire ate Hot Dogs for the first time. Whether they in turn gave FDR some Marmite is an open question.

1948- Col. Eddie Marcus was a career West Point grad US Army officer who spent World War Two on General Eisenhower’s staff planning the campaigns in Europe. Eddie Marcus was also a Jew. When the new state of Israel needed military experience, Marcus volunteered and was made the commanding Aluff -General of the Jerusalem Front. He was given the name Mickey Stone as a code name. After furious fighting against Jordanian, Syrian and Iraqi forces, a UN ceasefire went into effect. This night when Marcus stepped out of his tent during a curfew to relieve himself he was accidentally shot and killed by a young Israeli sentry. The boy only spoke Hebrew and Marcus only spoke English. He was also wrapped in his bedsheet and the boy thought it was Arab dress. Eddie Marcus’ body was flown back to America and interred at West Point. The incident was made into a film with Kirk Douglas called "Cast a Giant Shadow."

1955- The deadliest day at Le Mans. During this particular running of the famous 24 hour car race a Mercedes crashed into an Austin Healy at high speed and the cars disintegrated spewing metal parts into the crowd of spectators. 85 died and 100 more were hurt.

1959 – The US Postmaster General banned D H Lawrence's novel Lady Chatterley's Lover as pornography. He was overruled by US Court of Appeals in March 1960.

1963- Alabama Governor George Wallace stood in the schoolhouse door and refused to allow two black students to integrate Alabama University. He eventually stood aside before federal troops but his stand made him a national figure. Ironically Wallace was originally a liberal judge but after being defeated for Governor in 1958 changed his tone to conservative racism.

1964 - Chicago police break up a Rolling Stones press conference.

1964 - Manfred Mann recorded Do Wah Diddy Diddy.

1966 - "Paint It, Black" by The Rolling Stones peaks at #1

1966 - Janis Joplin played her 1st gig in San Francisco.

1968- After the carnage of the Tet Offensive and the Battle of Que Sanh, General William Westmoreland stepped down as commander of all US forces in Vietnam. Unlike Defense Secretary Robert McNamara General Westmoreland remained unrepentant for the rest of his life. He blamed his failures in Vietnam on the media, hippies and the racial mixture of his army.

1972- THE MOST PROFITABLE FILM IN HISTORY. The film Deep Throat premiered. The first full length blockbuster porn film. The film was shot in just three days, by an ex-hairdresser turned director. It cost $22,500 to make and grossed $600 million. It became a counterculture cause celebre. Frank Sinatra screened a print for Vice President Spiro Agnew. Star Linda Lovelace later disavowed her career and claimed she did the sex scenes under duress from her husband Chuck Trainor. She died in a car accident in the 1982. Today the term Linda Syndrome denotes former porn actresses who try to deny their past.

1977 - Main Street Electrical Parade premiered at Disneyland.

1979- John Wayne died after a long struggle with cancer. Many believed his condition began as a result of filming the movie "The Conqueror" near the Nevada Atomic Test site. Half the crew of that film including all the stars and director died of cancer. When Wayne made a final appearance at the Academy Awards two months earlier he had purchased a small size tuxedo to hide his emaciated frame, but he was still too thin even then so he filled it out by wearing a scuba wetsuit underneath

1984- In the freewheeling economy of the 1980’s tycoons conducted hostile takeovers of companies by buying a majority of their stock on margin. When Wall Street corporate raider Saul Steinberg announced he intended to target the ailing Walt Disney Company for takeover CEO Ron Miller paid him $23 million just to make him go away. The Disney shareholders are outraged at this payment of "greenmail’ and demanded Miller’s resignation, which some say was exactly as Roy Disney had planned.

1987- Margaret Thatcher was re-elected to a second term as Britain’s Prime Minister.

1987- Britain noted the first outbreak of Mad Cow Disease.

1993 –Steven Spielberg’s "Jurassic Park" opened. The film set a box office record of $931 million. It was begun with modelers and puppeteers about to do the dinosaurs with clay and beeswax. But after seeing tests using the new 3D CGI –computer graphic imaging software, Steven ordered all of ILM to do it digitally. Jurassic Park clinched the digital takeover of Hollywood and set the standard for future special effects.

2002- Fox TV’s show American Idol premiered.
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Yesterday’s Question: Who is the main character in Ben Johnson’s 1606 play Volpone?

Answer: Volpone.


June 10th, 2010 thurs.
June 10th, 2010

Quiz: Who is the main character in Ben Johnson’s 1606 play Volpone?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Who was barbarossa?
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History for 6/10/2010
Birthdays: Charles James Stuart the Old Pretender, Yamaoka Tesshu (1832- Japanese swordsman), Saul Bellow, Judy Garland, Hattie McDaniel, Frederick Loewe (of Lerner & Loewe) Howlin’ Wolf, Maurice Sendak, Gina Gershon is 47, Leilee Sobieski is 26, Jean Triplehorn is 46, Britain’s Prince Phillip, Jurgen Prochnow, John Edwards, Elizabeth Hurley is 44

Happy 100th Birthday!!read on-1910

1190- Emperor Frederick III Barbarossa (red-beard) died. Barbarossa (not to be confused with the Algerian-Barbary pirate Nur Al Din of the same name in the 1700's) was the great Hohenstaufen German Emperor who decided to go on Crusade at the same time as Richard Lionheart and Phillip Augustus of France. Frederick was very old but insisted he make the trip. This day while crossing a stream in Turkey, Frederick Barbarossa had a fatal heart attack and fell into the water. His men, never being that thrilled about the whole thing and taking their king's death as the clincher, turned around and went home.

1682- English colonists in Connecticut observed a phenomenon unique to the Americas, a dark windstorm taking the form of a funnel. The first recorded Tornado.

1750- Francois Voltaire accepted the invitation of King Frederick the Great of Prussia to come live at his court. French King Louis XV laughed: “ Now there will be one less nut in Versailles and one more nut in Berlin.” The friendship between Frederick and Voltaire is fascinating- night after night over dinner, the enlightened gay despot matched wits with the commoner who was the greatest philosophical mind of the century. When Voltaire argued that the world would be better off with no religion or belief in God, King Frederick retorted:” But my dear Voltaire, if you did away with God, then common people would raise statues to you and pray to them.” At times Voltaire’s arguments would get Frederick so angry that the Frenchman would flee fearing for his life. Frederick ordered the borders closed and sent a troop of cavalry to drag him back, so they could finish their argument.

1752- BEN FRANKLIN FLIES HIS KITE- The wizard of Philadelphia was not the actual discoverer of electricity, Leyden Jars and Volta's experiments predate him. He did make the connection between lightning and electric currents and created the lightning rod and the first electric battery. He didn't tell anyone about the kite experiment until 15 years later for fear people would think him a silly fellow. There’s a famous painting of Ben with his kite being assisted by his young child William. In actuality William was about thirty at the time and during the Revolution he became Royalist Governor of New Jersey and couldn’t stand his old man.

1776- The great English actor David Garrick went on stage for the last time, playing in a benefit for the Decayed Actor’s Fund. Hmm, I wonder if could start a Decayed Animator’s Fund….

1776- The Continental Congress appointed a committee of Ben Franklin, John Adams ,William Rutledge and Thomas Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence. Most of the hard work devolved upon Jefferson. Franklin glibly noted:` It has been my practice to avoid being the author of any paper which would be reviewed by a public body. Tom Jefferson borrowed much from enlightened European writers like Burke and Montesqiou. There were 46 revisions before the final draft was voted on, including taking out any references to outlawing the slave trade. Yet Jefferson’s great prose but it perfectly “All Men are Created Equal, endowed by their Creator with certain Inalienable Rights, among them Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Ever since these words were thrown at tyrants and inspired leaders as diverse as Ho Chi Minh and Fidel Castro.

1801- The Barbary Pirates of Tripoli declared war on the little nation called the United States. These Mediterranean buccaneers would extort tribute money from countries whose ships passed through their waters. So long as Yankee shipping was protected by the British Navy this wasn't a problem, but America was on its own now and the Dey of Algiers demanded payment. One senator's famous cry was Millions for Defense, but not one cent for Tribute!

1847 –The Chicago Tribune begins publishing

1860- The Comstock Lode- Near Virginia City Nevada Two grubstake miners, one named Old Pancake McGaughlin hit a vein of silver so big and pure that it will eventually yield $300 million dollars worth of ore and make millionaires of men like William Randolph Hearst's father.

1865- Wagners opera Tristan und Isolde premiered in Munich. To meet the demands of Wagners music the orchestra needed to be so much larger than usual that they had to take out the first two rows of seats to enlarge the orchestra pit. Conductor Franz Von Bulow , whose wife Cosima was busy schtupping Maestro Wagner at the time, committed a brilliant blunder when he announced within earshot of the news reporters:" Take out the seats! One or two extra schweinhunts won't matter!" Not the way to get good reviews..
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1902 - Patent for the window envelope granted to H F Callahan.

1905- Japan and Russia accept the offer of peace talks to be mediated by American President Teddy Roosevelt. For ending the Russo-Japanese War Roosevelt received the first Nobel Peace Prize.

1910- The first Krazy Kat comic strip- Cartoonist George Herriman was doing a strip for Hearst called "The Family Upstairs". He was amused at the idea of a friendship between a cat and a mouse. So Herriman put them in the corner playing marbles while the family quarreled. First an office boy and later editor Arthur Brisbane suggested they have their own strip. The immortality of the denizens of Coconino County follows, loved by the likes of H.L.Mencken, e.e.cummings and Jacques Kerouac. Krazy herself explains:"It's wot's behind me that I am."

1926- Artist Antonio Gaudi was run over by a streetcar while crossing in front of his famous cathedral in Barcelona. Begun in 1886 The Cathedral Sacreda Familia is still scheduled for completion- in the year 2035.

1935- A New York stockbroker and an Ohio physician, both recovered alcoholics, invent a twelve step recovery program called Alcoholic's Anonymous.

1939 - Barney Bear, cartoon character, by MGM, debuts

1942- LIDICE- In occupied Czechoslovakia the Czech underground scored a big victory when they assassinated the Nazis occupation Gauleiter or governor Richard Heydrich, a personal friend of Hitler. Hitler ordered in revenge a Czech village selected at random and destroyed. The SS surrounded the village of Lidice and shot the whole population of 1,300, then burned and tore down the buildings.

1944- A USO troop was entertaining soldiers in Normandy from the back of a truck but they needed a piano player. They called out to the audience if anyone could play. A shy cattle rancher’s son from Modesto California came up and played so well his colonel ordered him out of the line to form his own G.I. band. Dave Breubeck’s jazz career began.

1945- General Eisenhower was given a massive ticker tape parade down Broadway in New York City. Looking down on Ike from an office building 20 floors up, was a rumpled Navy Reserve Second Lieutenant named Richard Nixon.

1947- Sweden’s Saab motorcar company introduced it’s first model car. Saab in neutral Sweden had made planes and tanks for World War Two, but after the war was over they recognized that combat was not a growth industry and they switched to autos.

1948- Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier and achieved Mach I in the Bell XS-1 Glamorous Glennis.

1948- THE JOHNSON CITY WINDMILL- Congressman Lyndon B. Johnson was trying to win a senate seat from Texas but he was lagging far behind a popular ex-governor named Coke Stevenson. So he hit upon a novel way of campaigning. He hired a helicopter and barnstormed the rural towns and districts of the Texas hill country. People came out just to see the newfangled flying machine land and take off and this gave Johnson a captive audience. They nicknamed it the Johnson City Flying Windmill. Johnson also mounted a massive outlay of posters and pamphlets. He told his staff:” Ah don’t want a voter to wipe his ass with a piece of paper that ain’t got my face on it!” He pulled even to Stevenson and with a little extra ballot box skullduggery won the election.

1957- “Tom Terrific and Manfred the Wonder Dog” cartoon debuts on the Captain Kangaroo show.

1980- Comedian Richard Pryor had been doing so much cocaine even his dealers were worried about him. This day, while trying to freebase he exploded in flame, and ran screaming down his street. Another version of the story said he tried to commit suicide by pouring tequila on himself and setting it alight. During his long recovery in the Sherman Oaks burn unit his nurse once put on the news and he watched CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite report his death. `He thought to himself: "If Walter Cronkite said I died, it must be true !" He recovered but developed Muscular Dystrophy in the late 1990s.

1995-110,000 people jam Central Park in New York to see Disney's Pocahontas, the largest audience ever to attend a single movie premiere.
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Yesterday’s Question: Who was barbarossa?

Answer: See above, 1190.


June 9th 2010 weds
June 9th, 2010

Question: Who was barbarossa?

Yesterday’s Quiz Answered Below: What does it mean to be Shanghaied?
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History for 6/9/2010
Birthdays: Ernesto "Che" Guevara, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Cole Porter, John Bartlett of Bartletts Familiar Quotations, Boy George O’Dowd, Les Paul, Burl Ives, Lash LaRue, Happy Rockefeller, Robert MacNamara, Major Bowes, Carl Neilsen, Donald Trump, Jerzy Kosinski, Pierre Salinger, Steffy Graff, Marvin Kalb, Charles-Augustin de Coulomb, physicist who formulated Coulomb's Law, Dr. Alois Alzheimer, Aaron Sorkin, Michael J. Fox is 49, Johnny Depp is 47, Natalie Portman is 29

Today is the Feast Day of St Columba, and St. Maximian of Syracuse.

68 AD- Roman Emperor Nero commits suicide. Nero saw the jig was up when the Roman people welcomed the Spanish Legions of Servius Galba into the city, shouting "Death to the Incendiary! Death to RedBeard!” a nickname implying his fatherhood may not have been pure Latin. He took his life on the anniversary of the murder of his wife, whom he had kicked to death while she was pregnant. He had his servant Epaphroditus push a knife into his throat. Nero died saying "Oh, what an artist dies in me!” Nero was descended from Augustus on his father’s side, and on the other side from Marc Anthony. His death ended the direct bloodline of Julius Caesar's family. For the next few months four generals would turn their armies homeward to fight for power. The Roman called this period "The Long Year".

1358- The Massacre of Meaux. In a France already ravaged by the Black Death and the Hundred Years War, a violent peasant revolt broke out called the Jacquerie -Poor Jacques. On this day two top knights, one from the English side and one from the French- Gaston Phoebus and the Captal De Buch, took time out from their war to join forces and chop up dozens of rebellious peasants in the town of Meaux. Phoebus later became a character in Hugo's novel the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

1732- James Oglethorpe, a British Parliamentarian, was granted a charter by King George II to found a penal colony south of the Carolinas. He would call it Georgia in honor of the king.

1798- Napoleon's fleet, on the way to Egypt, stops to attack the strategic island of Malta. The keepers of the Island fortress, the once valiant Knights of Malta, had become so stodgy and decrepit that the French easily burst in. When Napoleon inspected the massive defense works, capable of holding an attacker at bay for months, he said: " This conquest is embarrassing." After the Napoleonic Wars Britain took over Malta until the 1950's. The Knights went from an order of warrior-monks, to a jet-set club, with members like Prince Rainier and Sir Frank Sinatra and charity work like Saint John's Ambulance.

1817- A defective boiler destroyed the experimental riverboat Washington. Despite this unfortunate occurrence, the S.S. Washington was the prototype of Mississippi riverboats- a flat bottomed side wheeler with the engine machinery above the waterline instead of down in a deep hold like Robert Fulton’s model.

1834 – Brass helmet deep-sea diving suit was patented by African-American inventor Leonard Norcross of Dixfield, Maine. The design remained unchanged for 100 years.

1834 - Sandpaper patented by Isaac Fischer Jr., Springfield, Vermont

1839 – The first Henley Regatta held

1847 - Robert von Bunsen invents the Bunsen burner.

1860- DIME NOVELS & PULP FICTION. Mr. Erastus Beadle (don’t you love 19th century names?) published the first dime novel, Maleska, Indian Wife of the White Hunter by Anna Stephens. Sometimes called the Penny Dreadfulls, pocket-sized stories printed on cheap pulp paper became popular reading. They fantasized the West, extolling two-gun chivalry and virtuous maidens, roaring desperadoes and wild savages. This early form of mass media made celebrities out of fringe yahoos like Buffalo Bill, Wild Bill Hickok, Billy the Kid and Belle Starr.

1863- BRANDY STATION-The largest cavalry battle of the Civil War- Union cavalry caught Jeb Stuart's reb cavalry in camp. Stuart's horses and men were spent because they had spent the previous day holding a pageant showing off for the ladies. A huge confused swirl of horse flesh, sabers and guns ensued. The rebs eventually drove off the Yankees, but Stuart looked pretty dumb being surprised so badly. Yankee cavalry finally proved that under tough new leadership like Sheridan and Custer they could hold their own with the excellent Southern gentlemen horsemen.

1902- Woodrow Wilson was named President of Princeton University. One of the Board of Trustees that selected the future US President, was the former US President, Grover Cleveland.

1918- Louella Parsons began her Hollywood Gossip column. Louella became one of the most powerful and widely read columnists in Hollywood’s golden age. Stories say Louella got as much pull as she did in the Hearst newspaper empire for helping cover up the killing of director Thomas Ince and also trying to stifle the release of Orson Welles’ film Citizen Kane.

1920- King George V dedicated the new Imperial War Museum, comprising artifacts from the recently concluded Great War. In 1936, the War museum moved to its present home in the former building of the infamous mental asylum, Bedlam.

1930- Chicago Tribune reporter Jack Lingle was shot and killed by Al Capone’s hoods. The hit was done right in broad daylight on Michigan Ave and Randolph St at the Illinois Central underpass at the height of rush hour. It was first thought that Lingle was going to do some kind of courageous crusading journalist expose, but Big Al had him rubbed out because he welched on a $100,000 gambling debt.

1934- Happy Birthday Donald Duck! Walt Disney's short cartoon"The Little Wise Hen".

1934- The film the Thin Man with William Powell. Myrna Loy and Asta the dog premiered.

1938 - Chlorophyl isolated by Benjamin Grushkin

1938 - Dorothy Lathrop wins the 1st Caldecott Medal for outstanding childrens books.

1941- First day shooting on the film, the Maltese Falcon. It was John Huston’s first directorial effort and Humphrey Bogart had to provide his own wardrobe.

1942 - The1st bazooka- shoulder held rocket launcher, produced in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The name Bazooka was from a Fred Allen and Allen’s Alley radio show name for a home-made musical instrument made from a stove pipe. Bazookas became vital in the US infantry’s ability to stop tanks and other obstacles. Chicago writer Mike Royko once noted that in 1967 Congress passed a law forbidding private citizens from owning bazookas at home for recreation, which probably annoys some NRA-Second Amendment advocates.

1942- LBJ in the USN- Young, Texas Congressman Lyndon Baines Johnson spent 1941 loudly declaring if war came, he’d be the first in the trenches. After Pearl Harbor, he joined the US Naval Reserve and was made a lieutenant-commander. He spent the next few months inspecting naval facilities in Hollywood and Squaw Valley, Idaho while partying hard. Finally, friends warned he better go to the battlefront before too much talk hurt him politically. He flew as an observer on one mission of B-26 bombers over the Japanese held island of Leii, New Guinea. To his credit, he reacted coolly as Japanese Zeroes attacked. The original plane he was supposed to be on got shot down over shark-infested waters. After the mission, General MacArthur gave him a Silver Star, whose ribbon he wore proudly for the rest of his life. After 13 minutes in actual combat, the next day he was on a plane Stateside. By July 18th he had resigned his commission (by Presidential Order he added), and was back at his desk in Washington. Presidential aide Harry Hopkins quipped:” Lyndon Johnson is back from his politically expedient dip in the Pacific.”

1942 - Anne Frank began her diary.

1943- The Internal Revenue Service introduced the Pay-As-You-Go system of tax collection, or today we know it as tax withholding from your paycheck.

1945- First heavy B-29 Superfortress bombers leave Tinian and Saipan to attack Tokyo.

1950- After all appeals fail, the first of the Hollywood Ten, screenwriters Dalton Trumbo, Philip Dunne, Alvah Bessie, Waldo Salt, Edward Dymtytrk, David Ogden Stewart, Ring Lardner and John Howard Lawson are sentenced to prison. In the L.A. Municipal Jail one felon greeted the leftist writers with a smile and said: "Hi Ya, Hollywood Kids!”

1953 - Elvis Presley graduates from L.C. Humes High School in Memphis, Tennessee.

1972- Rapid City, South Dakota destroyed by a flash flood. 280 died.

1973- The thoroughbred horse Secretariat ridden by Ron Turcott won the Belmont Stakes, taking the first Triple Crown since Citation did it in 1948. He won it by an amazing 31 lengths! Secretariat was sired by Bold Ruler, the 1957 Preakness winner. The Triple Crown is three high stakes races each progressively of greater length than the previous-The Kentucky Derby 1+1/8th miles, The Preakness 1+1/4 miles and the Belmont Stakes 1+1/2. Secretariat becomes the only non-human to appear on Greatest Sports Legends of the Twentieth Century lists.

1976 – Chuck Barris’ the" Gong Show" premiered. Where’s Jean-Jean the Dancing Machine?

1989 - Queen Elizabeth II knighted Ronald Reagan.

1992- Congress passed the Internet Communications Act, opening up the Internet to the public. At this time, when only defense contractors used it, the Internet had 50 websites; by 2000, it had 77 million websites, now in the hundreds of millions.

2002 –The Canadian Supreme Court lifted the ban on Gay marriages as unconstitutional; the first couple in Ontario was legally married.

2160 - Montgomery Edward Scott, called Scotty or Mr. Scott, born in Aberdeen, Scotland, the engineer of the Starship Enterprise in Star Trek. “ Cap’n, Ah dunno know how much more the engines can take!”
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Yesterday’s Quiz: What does it mean to be Shanghaied?

Answer: In Gold Rush San Francisco, shipmasters had a problem finding enough men to take a ship out, since all their crews had run off to prospect for gold. So ship owners paid innkeepers to get sailors by drugging & kidnapping them, When asked about a missing man’s whereabouts, the innkeeper said ” He shipped off to Shanghai”. The furthest place he could think of.


June 8th, 2010 tues.
June 8th, 2010

Quiz: What does it mean to be Shanghaied?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Of all the characters in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, only one was an actual living historical figure. Who was it?
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History for 6/8/2010
Birthdays: Robert Schumann, Frank Lloyd Wright, Barbara Bush, Admiral David Dixon Porter, Leroy Neiman, Emmanuel Ax, Alexis Smith, Nancy Sinatra, Boz Scaggs, Jerry Stiller is 83, Dana Wynter, British cricketeer Ray Illingsworth, Juliana Margulies, Joan Rivers is 77, Keenan Ivory Wayans is 52, Scott Adams (the creator of Dilbert) is 52. Gary Trousdale is 49, Kanye West is 33

452AD- Attila the Hun invaded Italy.

1786- A New York newspaper advertised that a Mr. Hall was now selling the Italian confection called Iced Cream. First reference to Ice Cream in the United States.

1809- American Revolutionary writer Thomas Paine died. When his chubby doctor said: " Your belly diminishes." Paine smiled and replied: "And yours augments."

1845- Old Hickory, Andrew Jackson died. His last words to his friends and servants was:” Goodbye, I hope to meet you all again in Heaven, both Black and White.” After, someone asked Jackson’s manservant” Do you think Jackson is in Heaven?” The man replied:” If General Jackson decides he wants to go to heaven, Who can stop him?”

1867- Two years after the Civil War ended former Confederate General James Longstreet, the right hand of Robert E. Lee, published a newspaper article encouraging Southerners to forget their anger and work with the U.S. Government. He even declared his intention to join Abe Lincoln’s party, the Republicans! He saw his actions as the only practical course. But embittered rebels vilified him as a traitor. This letter was the reason the name Longstreet is not today as fondly remembered as Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee or Jeb Stuart, even though his record was their equal. His old friends even blamed him for losing the Battle of Gettysburg!

1869- Chicago native Mr. Ives McGaffey was given a patent for a “sweeping machine that utilizes the power of air suction” the Vacuum cleaner.

1871- 70-year-old Kiowa warchief Satanka or Setangya was being transported in an army wagon, handcuffed, to prison. He said to some Indians along the road:" Go tell my people to come and get my body here, because I'm gonna go die now." As he spoke he slowly worked his hands out of the handcuffs, taking the flesh off in the process. He then sprang on the surprised soldiers and fought until they killed him. They dumped his body on the roadside where the Kiowa found him later.

1886- King Ludwig II, ruler of the second largest independent German State, Bavaria, was declared legally insane by his cabinet and put under arrest. Ludwig the Mad bankrupted his treasury building wild anachronistic castles like Neuschwanstein and the Blue Grotto and Richard Wagner’s concert hall at Bayreuth. Ironically, today, these buildings are among the main tourist attractions in Germany.

1889 –The Red Car cable car began service in LA.

1889 - Start of the Sherlock Holmes Adventure "Boscombe Valley Mystery"

1892- Bob Ford, the man who killed Jesse James ten years earlier, was running a saloon in the Colorado silver mining country. A man named Ed Kelly came up behind him and said: "Oh, Bob?" As Ford turned around, Kelly let loose with both barrels of his shotgun.
Ford had just come from a Church where he donated money to bury a local saloon girl. He had written on his donation " Charity Covereth Up a Multitude of Sins..."

1900 - Start of Sherlock Holmes story the "Adventure of 6 Napoleons"

1912- Carl Laemmle forms Universal Pictures Studio.

1942 - Bing Crosby records "Silent Night".

1942-In a private meeting at the White House President Franklin Roosevelt asked movie mogul Jack Warner to make a movie showing our new ally the Soviet Union to the American people in a positive light. The movie “ MISSION TO MOSCOW” starring Walter Huston put a rosy spin on Stalin’s regime and even made excuses for his genocidal political purges. After the war and FDR’s death, angry conservative politicians conducting the House un-American Activities Committee went after Warner Bros over MISSION TO MOSCOW. Everyone who worked on the film got in trouble and had to apologize.

1945- In Tokyo, at a meeting of the cabinet attended by Emperor Hirohito, the Japanese decide that despite the defeat of Germany, they “ would prosecute the war to the bitter end.”

1946- Bob Clampett's cartoon 'Kitty Kornered' , the first Sylvester the Cat cartoon ,debuted.

1948 - "Milton Berle Show" Uncle Miltie- premiered on NBC TV.

1950- Universal pictures released 'Winchester '73', the first film in which the star James Stewart negotiated for a back end percentage of the profits. Stewart's agent was Lew Wasserman, the head of MCA and mentor of Steven Speilberg.

1954- During the Army-McCarthy Anti-Communist hearings, in front of a live television audience, attorney Joseph Walsh takes apart Senator Joseph McCarthy for stooping to accuse a junior law partner in Walsh’s office for once belonging to a socialist organization. Walsh’s dramatic cry gained national prominence “ Finally Senator, have you no shred of decency?” McCarthy was censured by Congress, stripped of his chairmanships, and was politically finished.

1962- Twentieth Century Fox fired Marilyn Monroe for her erratic druggy behavior on the set of “Something’s Got to Give”and canceled the picture. Monroe went into a tailspin that would lead to her suicide four weeks later. Even after her death Fox then sued her estate for $80,000.

1968 - Rolling Stones release "Jumpin' Jack Flash".

1967- During the Arab-Israeli Six-Day War Jewish paratroops retook the Old City of Jerusalem, lost during the war of 1948. Battle toughened soldiers wept like children being able to pray once more at the Wailing Wall.

1969 - "Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour," last airs. The show was canceled by CBS, not for bad ratings, but because its format highlighted liberal and anti-Vietnam War performers like Buffy Saint-Marie, Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger. Producer Tommy Smothers was constantly battling nervous network executives to let Seeger sing songs like “Big Muddy” a direct criticism of U.S. war policy. Finally when former President Lyndon Johnson personally called CBS chief Bill Paley to complain, the show was yanked. When writer/singer Mason Williams learned the Smothers Brothers Show was canceled, he planned to make an enormous pie to throw at the eye logo on the CBS building, but they threatened to sue him for trespassing if he actually staged the stunt...

1981- Former UN General Secretary Dr Kurt Waldheim was elected President of Austria despite revelations about his once being an officer in the Nazi army.

1983 – The films "Trading Places," & "Gremlins," premiered.

1984-Ivan Reitmans’ film "Ghostbusters" premiered. In 1989, when the Berlin Wall fell, West German politicians tried to get the wildly partying crowd to sing the national anthem Deutschlandlied. But they got drowned out by the crowd happily singing “Who Ya Gonna Call? GHOST-BUSTERS!!”

1984- Donald Duck officially became a member of the Screen Actors Guild- SAG.

1986- NBC was bought by General Electric. David Letterman joked about now having to interview toaster ovens on his show.

1998- the President of Nigeria, General Sani Abacha, died during a Viagra reinforced assignation with three prostitutes.

1999-The nation of Columbia announced it would now factor in its drug exports when calculating the nations GNP or Gross National Product.

2002- Forest Service ranger Terri Barton was trying to burn a letter from her estranged husband. The blaze she started became the Haywood Fire, the worst forest fire in Colorado history. The fire destroyed 103,000 acres and almost burned down the city of Denver.
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Yesterday’s Question: Of all the characters in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, only one was an actual living historical figure. Who was it?

Answer: The Hogwarts students discussed the ancient alchemist Nicholas Flamel, who actually lived (1330-1418), and legend said did discover how to turn lead into gold.


June 7th, 2010 monday
June 7th, 2010

Question: Of all the characters in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, only one was an actual living historical figure. Who was it?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Sic Transit Gloria Mundi…?
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History for 6/7/2010
Birthdays: Pope Gregory XIII, Beau Brummel, Paul Gauguin, Chick Corea, George Szell, Watergate congressman Peter Rodino, Tom Jones, Jessica Tandy, James Ivory, Virginia McKenna, Liam Neeson is 58, Prince is 52

1099- After three years of marching and fighting, the massed hordes of the First Crusade finally sight the Holy City of Jerusalem.

1191- Richard the Lionheart arrived in the Holy Land for the Third Crusade, he went by ship via Sicily and Cyprus- the easy way. The Crusaders met him on the beach with an old song that today is "For He's a Jolly Good Fellow".

1520-THE FIELD OF THE CLOTH OF GOLD- A Renaissance international summit organized by Cardinal Woolsey. King Henry VIII of England, King Francois Le Bel of France and Emperor Karl of Germany, all pitched their expensive gold cloth tents together, and held feasts, revels and tournaments while discussing politics.

1594- All during Queen Elizabeth Ist reign there were plots and attempts on her life. This day the Queens Spanish-Jewish doctor Rodrigo Lopez was executed on suspicion of his attempting to poison the Queen. The evidence was circumstantial and Elizabeth took several weeks to decide to sign the death warrant. When the news got out there was a wave of Anti-Semitic feeling among the English populace, even though most Jews had been banned from England since 1388. This is seen as the time when William Shakespeare got the inspiration to create Shylock the wicked Jewish money lender in his play the Merchant of Venice.

1769- Frontiersman Daniel Boone reached Kentucky by charting a way through the Cumberland Gap. Though they seem quaint hills today in Colonial times the Allegheny Mountains presented an insurmountable barrier preventing further movement west from the colonies of the Atlantic coast. Boone’s achievement was the first penetration of this wall. Daniel Boone was once asked if he ever got lost. “ Nope” he said: “But I was bewildered once.”

1776- In the Continental Congress representative Richard Henry Lee stands up and proposes a resolution calling for American Independence. " Be it Resolved that these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States." This began the fateful debate that lasted until July 2nd. John Adams calculated that at this time only one third of the American public was for full independence, one third was for reconciliation with Britain and one third was fence sitting.

1856-CONGRESSIONAL SLUGFEST- During an angry debate on the slavery issue South Carolina Congressman Preston Brooks attacks and beat unconscious Massachusetts Representative Charles Sumner right on the floor of the House of Representatives.
"I wore out my cane on his head!” Brooks boasted. Admirers sent Brooks more canes. The slavery argument had become so ugly Congressman took to carrying concealed pistols and daggers to Capitol Hill. The news outraged abolitionists. In far away Kansas territory it affected preacher John Brown. "Dad went a little crazy when he got the news."-his son admitted. Brown would break into slave owners homes in the dead of night and announcing he was the Avenging Angel of the Lord, behead them with an antique broadsword.

1860- Workmen in San Francisco began laying track on Market Street for a light rail system, the famous Cable Cars.

1882- The electric iron was invented by Henry Seely of New York City. This event was pretty far sighted because not many homes were equipped with electricity yet.

1893- Young Indian lawyer Mohandas K. Gandhi was practicing in South Africa. This day he committed his first ever act of Civil Disobedience by refusing to comply with the racial segregation laws on a train out of Pietermaritzburg, Gandhi would win equality for so-called “coloreds “, meaning Indian and Asian citizens. Later Ghandi moved to India to become the Mahatma, or the Great Soul.

1924- This day marked the last known contact with the George Mallory Expedition. He was the first mountain climber to attempt to reach the summit of Mount Everest. They disappeared shortly after. Mallory’s bones were finally discovered in 1999. We all know that Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenjin Norgai conquered Everest in 1953, but Mallory reach the top first ? Unlike Scott of the Antarctic he left no diary or logbook so we may never know.

1932- During the Great Depression about one third of the independent banks in the U.S. failed. On this day Hollywood was affected because the First Bank of Beverly Hills went under, erasing the assets of many important Hollywood figures.
Greta Garbo lost one million dollars overnight. Louis B. Mayer, ever one to capitalize on a situation, offered her an advance if she would sign an exclusive 7 year contract with MGM. Garbo's back was to the wall so she signed, but then got her revenge in her own way- namely she immediately went on a 6 month vacation to Europe and took a lesbian lover named Mercedes DeAcosta whom she tongue-kissed in public.

1954- Scientist Alan Turing who helped break the German Enigma Code, was considered one of the fathers of the computer. Early computers were called Turing Machines. He predicted one day computers would be able to think like humans, and one day we would play games on our computers. But when Turing was revealed to be gay, he had to chose jail or medical treatment in a mental hospital. Alan Turing was a fan of the Disney film Snow White. This day he laced an apple with cyanide and bit into it. He was 42.

1955- The t.v. quiz show The $64,000 Question premiered.

1959- Boss of the Chicago Mafia Sam Momo Giancana testified to the Senate McClellan Committee on racketeering in the U.S. . While he was being grilled by chief prosecutor Robert Kennedy Giancana had a strange grin on his face. Bobby Kennedy lashed out:”Why are you giggling Mr. Giancana? Don’t only little girls giggle?”What Bobby didn’t know was Giancana was being courted by his own father Joe Kennedy Sr to help with money and support in the upcoming Presidential Election of his brother Jack.
Giancana’s support of the Kennedy’s and later disappointment when there was no let up in the rackets probes after the election is a main feeder to the conspiracy theory that John F. Kennedy was killed by the mob. In 1975 the day before he was to testify to the Frank Church Senate Committee on Assassinations, Sam Giancana was murdered.

1975- Happy Birthday VCR’s ! This day Sony announced the first home videotape playing system, the Betamax. They were about $25,000 each, but we were promised as they became more popular the price would come down.

1993- Rockstar Prince celebrated his birthday by changing his name to that funny symbol no keyboard can reproduce and no one can say. In 2000 he switched back to Prince.
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Yesterday’s question: Sic Transit Gloria Mundi…?

Answer: Latin for “ And so passes the glory of the world.” Originally a phrase used during the coronation of a pope. Lately it’s more generally used as an epitaph. It means that all worldly things are fleeting.


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