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March 29, 2022
March 29th, 2022

Quiz: In WW2 slang, what is a pillbox?

Yesterday’s Question: What is a portmanteau?
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HISTORY FOR 3/29/2022
Birthdays: President John Tyler, Sir William Walton, Eric Idle is 79, former English P.M. John Major, Bud Cort is 74, LaToya Jackson, Eugene McCarthy, Jennifer Capriati, M.C. Hammer, Walt "Clyde" Frazier, Cy Young, Christopher Lambert is 67, Jimmy Dodd, Disney animator Jack Kinney, Brendan Gleeson is 67, Lucy Lawless, Elle MacPherson, Amy Sedaris is 61

327AD- St. Jonah was squished to death in a wine press.

1461- Battle of Towton. Edward IV Yorkist army defeated the last organized Lancastrian forces, ending the War of the Roses.

1519- Pope Leo X sent uppity monk Martin Luther an invitation to come to Rome and explain his curious opinions. Luther quickly understood his chances- once in the Vatican’s hands, at best he would be assigned to some obscure Italian monastery to live out his days in a vow of silence. At worst he would burn at the stake over a slow fire, with a nail hammered through his tongue, like earlier Vatican critics Jan Hus, Giordano Bruno and Savonarola. Martin Luther decided to tell Rome thanks, but no thanks, he’d stay in Germany where it was safe.

1638- The first Swedish colonists arrive in America. Remember at this time Sweden was just as big a kickass military power in Europe as England or France. In Delaware they built a settlement they call Fort Christina. Twenty years later the Dutch under Peter Stuyvesant captured the fort and drove them out. Despite their short stay, the Swedes left a lasting impression on the New World. They brought with them plans for steam baths and invented the Log Cabin.

1697- FRONTIER LIFE- French allied Abanaki Indians raided the cabins of Haverhill Massachusetts. The Indians carried off Mrs. Hannah Dustin and her maid. When Mrs. Dustins baby began to cry the Indians killed it, then being Catholic converts they paused to say a Rosary over him. But the mother was not in a forgiving mood.
This night when the warriors who guarded them slept, Mrs. Dustin and her maid quietly rose, grabbed tomahawks and murdered all the Abanakis. Then being aware of the Massachusetts bounty on Indian scalps she paused before fleeing to scalp all the bodies. She made it back home and earned 25 English pounds in prize money.
Rev. Cotton Mather included her story in his 1697 book Humiliations Follow’d with Deliverances, an early American best seller.

1814- As Russian, Swedish, Austrian and Prussian armies closed in around Paris Napoleons court led by Empress Marie Louise fled the city. Napoleon himself was at Troyes with his army. He rushed but arrived too late to save the city.

1886- COCA-COLA invented. Atlanta Pharmacist and liver pill salesman John Pemberton developed the carbonated drink, originally with Cocaine in it. His bookkeeper Francis Robinson penned the famous script logo, still in use today. Advertising for the drink claimed it cured everything from hysteria, cholic and the common cold.
The formula is still a secret. During World War II the Nazis openly worried how a break with the United States would effect their supply of Coca Cola, so Dr Goebbels arrested Coke execs in Germany and forced them to develop Fanta Cola.

1903- THE BIRTH OF THE DRIVE IN RESTAURANT? New York tycoon CKG Billings wanted to celebrate his new racing stables in Washington Park. So he invited 50 of the top New York financial society to a formal black tie dinner at Sherry’s Restaurant, except the entire dinner would be eaten on horseback. The horses were kept in a circle and a canvas painting of the English countryside provided the backdrop to the room. The moguls ate from solid silver trays and sipped champagne from straws in their saddlebags. The Horseback Dinner was one of the more outrageous examples of Gilded Age wealth and excess .

1936- Republic Pictures formed.

1939- Moviestars Clark Gable and Carole Lombard marry. They had a happy marriage until Lombard was killed in a plane crash in 1942. It’s been said the first California King Size mattress, slightly larger than normal king size, was ordered custom made for Gable and Lombard for their rather exuberant assignations at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

1951- 'The King and I' debuts on Broadway with Gertrude Lawrence and Yul Brynner, who shaved his head for the first time for the role.

1952- President Harry Truman announced he would not seek reelection.

1962-THE BILLY SOL ESTES AFFAIR- Estes was the "fertilizer king" and considered an insider in the Kennedy White House. His arrest by the F.B.I. for selling $30 million dollars in fraudulent fertilizer tanks implicated several heads of the agriculture department. It became the only major scandal of John F. Kennedy’s administration. Before his career in fertilizer, Estes tried running a funeral parlor but went out of business, ran for local office but was defeated by a write-in candidate. He became a campaign manager for the failed 1956 Presidential bid of Adlai Stevenson. As campaign manager he paid for large quantities of parakeets to be dropped by plane over major American cities and chant in unison "Vote for Adlai!"

1971- First day of shooting on the film The Godfather. Francis Coppola wanted young actor Al Pacino for the Michael Corleone role, but Pacino had signed with Fox to do a different film- The Gang that Couldn’t Shoot Straight. Producer Robert Evans begged and pleaded with Fox exec James Aubrey aka "The Smiling Barracuda", to get Pacino released from his contract. Finally Aubrey replaced him with Jerry Ohrbach. He called Evans and said:" Alright, you can have the midget." The scene was Michael and Kaye coming out of Best & Co. Dept. Store while Christmas shopping.

1973- Last U.S. combat troops left Vietnam. President Nixon announced that night " We have Peace with Honor". Communists conquered South Vietnam two years later.

1974- Mariner 10 was the first satellite to reach the planet Mercury.

1974- A Chinese farmer digging a well discovered the huge buried terracotta army of Chinas’ first emperor at XIAN.

1975- The Communist North Vietnamese capture DaNang, South Vietnam’s second largest city, signaling the beginning of the final drive on Saigon to end the Vietnam War.

1979- The House Committee Investigation into Assassinations, published their conclusions. They concluded that "President John F. Kennedy was in all probability killed by a conspiracy " but just who and why and what to do about it, they didn’t know.

1989- As part of one of the silliest Oscar telecasts in history, actor Rob Lowe had to dance and sing 'Proud Mary" with Las Vegas showgirl Eileen Bowman dressed as Disney’s Snow White. Rob Lowe had just been embarrassed by the publication of a videotape shot in a hotel room of him having sex with two teenage girls. The Walt Disney Company immediately threatened a lawsuit. The Academy apologized and replaced director Alan Carr with Gilbert Cates.

1989- At that same Oscar ceremony Pixar’s short Tin Toy became the first CG animation to ever win an Oscar.

1992- Presidential candidate Bill Clinton uttered the legendary American phrase:" I smoked pot- but I didn’t inhale!"

1993- At the 65th Academy Awards, Disney’s Aladdin won two Academy Awards for Best Song and Best Track. Best Animated Short was Mona Lisa Descending a Staircase by Joan Gratz.

2018- A Buzzfeed article detailed how animator John Kricfalusi, the creator of Ren & Stimpy, preyed on underage girls, promising them careers at his studio.

2020- At President Trump’s urging, the FDA approved emergency use of an anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine despite little evidence that it was effective in treating coronavirus. Even after the FDA declared hydroxychloroquine totally useless against the disease on Aug 1st, President Trump continued to tout its miraculous abilities.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: What is a portmanteau?

Answer: In the XIX Century, a large travelling suitcase that opened into two equal sections. It was originally made to strap on to a horse.


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