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Sept. 24th, 2008 weds
September 24th, 2008

Question: The Warner Bros. were originally Jews who emigrated from Poland to America, via Canada. What was their original family name?

Quiz: Some political writers are called pundits. What is a pundit?
History for 9/24/2008
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Vitellius, Duke Albrecht Wallenstein, First US Chief Justice
John Marshall, Francis Scott Key, Jim Henson, F. Scott Fitzgerald, George Raft,
Chief Joseph, Sheila MacCrae,, Anthony Newley. Phil Hartman, Mean Joe Greene, Linda
MacCartney, Pedro Almodovar

1789- Congress passes the First Judiciary Act, which calls for an Attorney General
and a Supreme Court. John Jay was first Chief Justice. When Washington formed the
first cabinet Thomas Jefferson asked if he could be Attorney General as well as
Secretary of State, because representing a little country with no foreign policy
was boring and had nothing to do.

1869- BLACK FRIDAY- A scheme by robber barons Big Jim Fisk and Jay Gould to corner
the US gold market backfired into a major financial panic. The two tycoons had thought
they had convinced the gullible President Ulysses Grant into halting sale of government
bullion. The night before Gould tried to bribe Grants brother-in-law James Corbin
with $100,00 to ensure the President wouldn’t change his mind. But Grant smelled
a rat and ordered millions in Federal gold put on the market to bring the prices
down. Gold hoarders saw their investment shrink overnight. This day the value of
gold dropped in three hours from $160 and ounce to $34. Up in the special part of
the N.Y. Stock Exchange nicknamed the Gold Room, dozens speculators were ruined.
One investor ran up and down shouting “Shoot Me! Someone Shoot Me!” “Let each man
drag out his own corpse.”-Gould later testified. Jay Gould recovered and died in
1892 worth $70 million In 1872 Big Jim Fisk was shot dead in the lobby of the
Grand Central Hotel by a jilted suitor of Fisk’s mistress actress Josie Mansfield.
And Grant the Civil War hero was labeled a financial dunce by Washington society.

1934- Frank Thomas’s first day as a Walt Disney Animator. His last was in 1978.

1936- Babe Ruth's last appearance in a baseball game. Yankees lost to Boston

1936- Noel Coward's play 'Private Lives' opened.

1938- Bob Clampett's cartoon "Porky in Wackyland" ( Foo!)

1938- Tennis champion Dan Budge won the US Open in Forrest Hills. Budge became the
first person to win all four major tennis meets in one year- Wimbledon, French Open
now called Roland Garros, Australian Open and US Open. The Grand Slam.

1941- This day the Japanese Consul in Honolulu was instructed by the Imperial War
Ministry to quietly begin gathering information about the US Fleet in Pearl Harbor.

1944- President Franklin Roosevelt had been criticized by Republican Congressmen
for wasting money in needless wartime excesses. This day he defeated his critics
with humor when they accused him of sending a Navy destroyer to the Aleutian Islands
just to retrieve his lost Scottie dog Fallah. He said in a speech” Now I am used
to personal attacks, My family is used to personal attacks, but Fallah- isn’t.(laughter) He’s Scottish, you know….and he hasn’t been the same dog since.”

1953-UPA's "Unicorn in the Garden" directed by Bill Hurtz, based on
the cartoon style of James Thurber.

1953- The movie "The Robe" premiered, the first movie in CinemaScope.
It's success was part of a wave of 'Sword & Sandal" epics and fostered
many imitation wide screen processes- Superama,VistaVision, Dynarama, WarnerVision,
TotalScope-etc. Paramount had experimented with VistaVision starting in the '30's.
A colleague bought a number of their prototype cameras, beautiful pieces of machinery,
no two exactly alike. There had been earlier experiments with wide screen - Abel
Gance's 1925 Napoleon, which used three 35mm images shown simultaneously, and
Cimmarron, which was a true wide screen 70mm film starring a very young John Wayne,
released in 1930. It was superceded by 1967 by the more advanced Panavison lense.
Today in Hollywood we still call a wide screen picture a "Scope" picture.

1955- President Eisenhower suffered a major heart attack while playing golf. Secretary
of State Allen Foster Dulles and other White House staffers run things without even
telling Vice President Nixon.

1960- The "Howdy Doody Time" children's show cancelled after a thirteen
year run. The show remains a pivotal memory in the minds of thousands of American
baby-boomers who grew up in the fifties. As the last song and the last credits rolled
by, just before the cameras switched off, Clarabell the mute clown goes up to the
lens and in a haunting voice said; "Goodbye, Kids."

1968- T.V. show "60 Minutes" debuts. Mike Wallace was pared with Harry
Reasoner. The show was originally aired Tuesday nights at 10PM and fared poorly
in the ratings. When it was moved to Sundays at 7:00PM it became a weekly institution.

1977- The TV series “The Love Boat “debuted.

1988- The GodFather of Soul Music James Brown got a little crazy sometimes. This
day he burst into his office complex in Georgia waving a pistol and shotgun and
demanded everyone stop using his washroom! After locking the bathrooms he led police
on high speed chase through Georgia and South Carolina, only stopping when the cops
shot out his tires. He rode the rims till they collapsed. James Brown did 2 years
for being under the influence of drugs. Hay!
Yesterday’s Quiz: Some political writers are called pundits. What is a pundit?

Answer: Pundit comes from Pandit, a Sanskrit word that means “ the learned”. English
lawmakers in colonial India would employ a native Indian legal adviser who was expert in regional laws and customs. He would be called a pandit. The fist president of India was referred to as Pandit Jawaharl Nehru.