Sept 29, 2016
September 29th, 2016

Question: What is a Zamboni?

Yesterday’s Question Answered below: Who coined the phrase, The Fix is In..?
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History for 9/29/2016
Birthdays: Roman general Pompey Magnus, Miguel de Cervantes, Admiral Horatio Nelson, Rudolph Diesel (inventor of the engine), Enrico Fermi, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gene Autrey, Lech Walesa, Stanley Kramer, Bryant Gumbel, Greer Garson, Michelangelo Antonioni, Ian McShane, Anita Ekberg, Andrew Dice-Clay, cartoonist Russ Heath is 90, Tom Sizemore, Emily Lloyd is 46, Silvio Berlusconi, Stephanie Miller is 55

In the Medieval calendar this was The Feast of Mickelmuss or MichaelMass In Old London this was the beginning of the winter lighting season when every tenth store had to maintain a candle in a street lamp, and light it after dark, until Lady Day March 25th.

440 A.D. -Pope Leo the Great consecrated. He was the pope who turned away Attila the Hun from the gates of Rome.

1066-WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR LANDS IN ENGLAND. When King Edward the Confessor died childless, he left the throne up for grabs. Earl Harold son of Godwin promised Duke William of Normandy that he would step aside and let him be king. But later Harold took the crown for himself. So Duke William invaded with 30,000 Norman knights. Duke William was an illegitimate son of Robert the Devil. He was called William the Bastard until the conquest, then he became William the Conqueror.
When William's ship landed at Pevensey Beach near Dover, Duke William leapt out into the surf to be the first to set foot in Britain. However in front of the whole army he stumbled and fell to his knees. Quickly realizing that if he didn't act fast the men would regard this as a dangerously bad omen, he grabbed two fistfuls of muddy sand in his clenched fists, raised them up and declared : "Ah Britain! Now I have you!" His men cheered and he went on to victory at Hastings on Oct. 16th.

1529- Phillip the Landgrave of Hesse got together the great Protestant leaders to try and seek a common ground for the anti-Catholic Reformation. Martin Luther met Swiss reformer Ulrich Zwingli at this conference. They couldn’t agree on anything and the meeting quickly fell apart. Even at the departure, Luther refused to shake Zwingli’s hand. “Your Spirit is not our Spirit.”

1798- At the court of Naples Admiral Horatio Nelson was given a 40th birthday party by his friend and patron, the British ambassador Sir William Hamilton. At this party Nelson first shows the signs of getting seriously turned on by Hamilton's hot young wife Emma. Sir William was 69, Emma was 30. The party was broken up when Nelson's stepson, who was serving as one of his lieutenants, got so drunk he made a scene.
The love affair between Nelson and Mrs. Hamilton in defiance of all social stigmas scandalized even that notorious age. Yet Sir William Hamilton seemed more interested in his ancient Roman pottery. Hamilton got more upset at the news of a shipload of antique vases sinking, than being told that his wife was shivering the admiral’s timbers.

1829- BOBBIES- Prime Minister the Duke of Wellington had been complaining for years that the city of London needed it's own regular police force instead of relying on irregular militia like the Bow Street Runners or the Horse Guards to do with urban maintenance. At this time sections of North London were so tough they were labeled on maps “No-Go”. On this day London's reorganized police force, The Greater Metropolitan Police Force based at Scotland Yard, went on duty. The constables, because they were formed by Home Secretary Sir Robert Peel, were nicknamed "Bobbie's Boys" or "Bobbies". They’re also nicknamed Old Bill. Some called them Peelers.

1862- THE GENERAL DISTURBANCE- The Yankee army in Tennessee had a morale problem among it's senior officers. Major General Bull Nelson got into an argument with Brigadier General Jefferson C. Davis -no relation to the President of the Confederacy. In a hotel lobby Davis confronted the 6' 5", 300 pound Nelson and flung a business card in his face. Nelson bellowed "Get outta my way you puppy!" and slapped him so hard he flew across the room. Whereupon General Davis drew a pistol and shot General Nelson in the chest." Tom, he's murdered me!" Bull Nelson cried as he died. Amazingly Gen. Davis was never tried or court-martialed because he was needed on the battlefield. I guess arguments between nations take precedence. Davis was finally cashiered out of the army when during Sherman's March through Georgia he was accused of destroying a bridge before a crowd of runaway slave families could cross, knowing they would be left at the mercy of the pursuing Confederates.

1913-Rudolph Diesel, inventor of the Diesel engine, celebrated his 55th birthday by jumping off his yacht into the English Channel and drowning himself.

1918- German ally Bulgaria requested an armistice with Britain and France to get out of World War One.

1925- Colonel Billy Mitchell testified to Congress that the air force needed to be a new independent branch of the military services because the current army and navy heads were too incompetent to grasp it’s future significance. For these remarks he was court-martialed and suspended for 5 years. He quit the army. In Germany Ernst Udet studied Mitchell’s tactics to develop the dive-bombing. In 1942 when it was obvious that World War II was being determined by air power, Billy Mitchell was reinstated a major general- posthumously. The US Air Force became a separate branch of the military in 1945.

1929- After a summer of fierce rioting between Jews and Arabs in Jerusalem, Nablus, Hebron and Bethlehem, Palestinian leader Oudah Mousah Pasah met with the British Mandate Governor. He warned that if something wasn’t done to curb Jewish desires for nationhood in Palestine, more violence would occur.

1930-Ninety year old writer George Bernard Shaw turned down the offer of a Peerage.

1930- First day of shooting on the Tod Browning horror classic Dracula. Hungarian actor and recreational morphine addict Bela Lugosi played the lead role he had already made famous on stage. Lugosi was identified with the character Dracula for the rest of his life and when he died he was buried in the Dracula cape.

1933- The movie A Bill of Divorcement introduced the star Katherine Hepburn.

1936- Leaders of the Spanish Fascist Phalange forces vote Gen. Francisco Franco "Il Caudillo- the Leopard", their overall leader, or Generalissimo.

1938- THE MUNICH AGREEMENT- Hitler duped war weary England & France that if he ate Czechoslovakia he would be satisfied. Prime Minister Chamberlain proclaims back home :"Peace in our Time." At the conference at Bertchesgarden the British and French prime ministers never conferred, never even had lunch with each other. And no one would give a hearing to Czech Premier Benes, who’s country after all was being dissolved.
In Germany a conspiracy of top generals lead by an Admiral Canaris were poised to topple Hitler in a coup the moment the news of Britain and France had declared war came from Munich. Instead the news of Hitler bluffing his way peacefully to victory caused the conspiracy to crumble. Around this time American CBS correspondent in Berlin William Shirer reported that those close to Hitler said he had a curious ritual to cope with stress. When the Fuhrer would fly into a rage he would calm himself by dropping to the floor and chewing on the corners of his carpet.

1941 Babi Yar. The Nazis drive the Jewish population of Kiev outside city and murder them in a ravine. Thirty thousand were killed in one day. The Ukrainian population had welcomed the Nazis as liberators from the tyranny of Stalin. For years afterwards the Soviet KGB denied Babi Yar's existence until poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko made the site famous with his poem of the same name.

1953- The television show “Make Room for Daddy” premiered, making a star out of big nosed nightclub entertainer Danny Thomas. The Lebanese Thomas had tried to break into films with no luck. He burst into tears after Columbia studio chief Harry Cohn suggested he get a nose job and forget about it. Danny Thomas at one time was the richest man in Beverly Hills.

1957- A nuclear reactor explosion in Chyrbtsk Russia released more deadly radiation than Chernobyl, but it was kept secret until recently.

1959- Hanna Barbera's "Quick Draw McGraw" TV show. Baba Louie and El Kabong!

1961- Russian ballet star Rudolph Nureyev, acclaimed as the greatest dancer of his age, defected to the west in Paris and was granted asylum.

1962- Because of the Independence of Algeria the French Foreign Legion quits their home base at Siddi Abbes forever. They took with them relics like the glass casket containing the wooden hand of Capt. Jean Danjou, killed at Camarone Mexico fighting the Juaristas.

1969- The TV series Love American Style premiered.

1975- The legendary R&B singer Jackie Wilson, collapsed of a heart attack while performing on stage for Dick Clark’s ‘Good Ol’ Rock and Roll Revue’ at the Latin Casino in Cherry Hill, N.J. He lingered in an out of a coma for 8 years, dying in 1984. He was only 49. All the time he was comatose, Dick Clark covered all his medical bills, and kept it a secret.

1976- At his birthday party musician Jerry Lee Lewis accidentally shot his bass player Norman Owens in the chest with s 357 magnum. He said he was using the gun to try and open a soft drink bottle and it accidentally went off. Owens survived and sued Lewis.

1982- Tylenol recalled hundreds of thousands of bottles of capsules after a lunatic laced some with cyanide, killing seven. The killer or killers were never found.

1996- The first Nintendo 64 bit game system, The NES, debuted in the US. It sold 500,000 the first day.

2008- When the Conservative US Congress failed to pass a bail-out bill for the economy, Wall Street dropped 700 points, the most ever at one time.
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Yesterday’s Question: Who coined the phrase, The Fix is In..?

Answer: The Chicago White Sox had the best team in baseball at the time but Charles Comisky paid them wages lower than most minor league teams. They were nicknamed the Black Sox because Comisky was too cheap to pay for laundering their uniforms. So in 1919 five players accepted bribes from gangster Arnold Rothstein to throw the world series. Pitcher Eddie Cicotte testified later that at the opening game he first threw a perfect fastball strike, then hit the batter in-between the shoulder blades on the next pitch- a signal to the gangsters that "The Fix was In" Cincinnati won this game 9 -1 and eventually the series.
The scheme was uncovered a year later and Baseball Commissioner Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis banned all the Sox players from ever playing again.


Sept 28, 2016
September 28th, 2016

Question: Who coined the phrase, The Fix is In..?

Yesterday’s Question Answered below: What does it mean to be circumspect?
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History for 9/28/2016
Birthdays: Michel Caravaggio, Georges Clemenceau, Al Kapp, William Paley, Max Schmelling, Bridgette Bardot is 82, Frederic Engels, Marcello Mastroianni, Moon Unit Zappa, Ed Sullivan, Sylvia Kristel, John Sayles, Arnold Stang, J.T. Walsh, Seymour Cray, Janeane Garofalo is 52, Mira Sorvino is 49, Hillary Duff is 29, Naomi Watts is 48

48 B.C.- Pompey the Great, fleeing Julius Caesar after he was defeated by him in battle in Greece, was assassinated by the Egyptians just as he landed on their shore. A hired Roman officer named Septimius did the murder. The Egyptians thought it would please Caesar to present him with his enemies head. When one of Pompey's supporters was approaching the coast by ship and saw a Roman-style funeral pyre, he knew their cause was lost. He sighed:" Even thou, Pompeius Magnus?"

855AD- The Frankish Empire of Charlemagne had covered Europe from Hungary to the Pyrenees. This day Frankish Emperor Lothar died, and according to custom his kingdom is divided among his sons. Lothar had fought against his brothers Charles the Bald and Louis the German unsuccessfully to keep the empire together. By the Treaty of Verdun Louis and Charles acknowledged the fact that Charlemagne’s Empire was jut too big to handle. They broke it up, creating the kingdoms of France, Germany and Austrasia- later Austria and Italy.

1043- Battle of Lyrskog Heath. King Magnus the Good of the Vikings defeated a Baltic tribe called the Wends. Magnus psyched out the enemy by taking off his chain mail armor, and put on a loud red shirt. He then ran ahead of his charging warriors swinging a large double bladed axe over his head in wide circles, until he crashed into the foe.

1216- CORONATION OF KING HENRY III- English King John Ist, aka John the Bad, John Lackland, John SoftSword, John the Total Loser, etc. was killed when an evil monk poured poisonous toad venom in his ear. His son Henry was left a situation that didn't make for a good coronation. The country was racked by civil war and invasion because of the dispute over the Magna Charter, the great document that granted broad ranging civil rights. Henry couldn't have his coronation at Westminster because London was occupied by a French army. He couldn't have the Archbishop of Canterbury preside over the ceremony because he was under house arrest in the Vatican. And to top it all off his father had lost the Iron Crown of Alfred the Great at the beach. Boy, what a downer of a party! Henry III would reign for 56 years and demand extravagance at all subsequent royal functions.

1542- The European Discovery of California- Juan de Cabrillo sailing up from Mexico stepped ashore at Cabrillo Point in San Diego Harbor. He had hoped that San Diego Bay would be the Straights of Anian, a mythical sea route back to the Atlantic that would be safer than Magellan’s Straights. All through the 1500’s conventional thinking was that America was just a big island with sea routes all around it. California was supposed to be the Kingdom of Califa, the Amazons who wield Golden Swords.

1774- Pennsylvanian Joseph Galloway proposed in the first Continental Congress that the solution to America’s problems with England was to petition the mother country for dominion status:” since the colonies hold in abhorrence the idea of being independent communities.” The Dominion Plan was defeated by only one vote.

1781- Washington and Rochambeau’s troops entered the siege trenches around Yorktown. They were amazed at the British army’s lack of activity. Lord Cornwallis knew he was being surrounded by land and sea for two weeks, yet he did nothing to break out of the trap. He decided to wait until his superior General Clinton would arrive with a rescue force. But Clinton was busy in New York entertaining King George’s younger son the Duke of York who was visiting America to buck up the troops morale. Clinton’s relief force showed up to Yorktown two weeks late for Cornwallis’ defeat.

1794- France’s Ecole Polytechnique first opened.

1850- Congress abolished flogging on US Naval vessels. Captains came up with other clever means of discipline like hanging a seaman from his thumbs.

1857- Wall Street collapsed and the ensuing panic created recession and unemployment.

1864- CENTRALIA RAID- Confederate Guerilla "Bloody-Bill" Anderson stops a train of 150 disarmed Union recruits and has them all killed and scalped. Because of the chaos of civil war, nobody noticed that this guy was a complete psychopath. He hung human hair from his saddle and galloped into battle weeping out loud as he fired his pistols. He would put a knot in the sash around his waist for every time he killed a Yankee. By the time Bloody Bill was finally gunned down his sash was full of knots.

1864- THE FIRST INTERNATIONALE opens. European and American trade unions hold a mass meeting in London with the goal of attempting to centralize the world struggle for labor rights. The meeting was soon sidetracked by radical and anarchist politics and soon disbanded. The Second and Third Internationales were more about communist politics. One positive accomplishment was a Frenchman wrote a melody for the meeting that became a famous song of revolution, "The Internationale".

1904- A woman is arrested on New York’s Fifth Ave for openly smoking a cigarette. Look how far we’ve come. Today almost anyone now can be arrested for smoking a cigarette!

1918- At Imperial German headquarters master strategist General Eric Ludendorf monitored the reports of his armies being driven back from their final defensive lines. Ludendorf closed his office door and went into a fit of hysterics- screaming that the Kaiser, the Reichstag and the Liberals had ruined everything. Then, after regaining his composure, he calmly walked downstairs to a meeting with General Von Hindenberg and Kaiser Wilhelm. There he told them that hopes for winning the World War I were now kaput. The German army was defeated, the people demand peace. Negotiations should begin immediately.

1924 -the first airplane flight around the world landed back at it's point of departure. Commander Leslie Arnold took off from Seattle with 5 converted torpedo bomber seaplanes. One crashed, another sank but the remaining three circumnavigated the globe.

1928-For his birthday William Paley, son of a cigar manufacturer, was given control of a little radio company called Columbia broadcasting. He turns CBS into a corporate broadcasting giant, and threw his support behind developing television and long playing records.

1950- In a media rich ceremony, General Douglas MacArthur restored South Korean President Sygmun Rhee to the presidential palace in liberated Seoul. The Marines complained that though they had done the bulk of the house-to-house fighting, they were left out of the ceremony by old regular Army man MacArthur. Colonel Chesty Puller looked at all the crisp Army MP’s standing guard and growled to a correspondent “ Today my First Marines took 25 combat casualties, while these little cookies were still flying out from Tokyo!”

1960- Ted Williams hits a home run at his last at-bat. Number 521.

1961- Richard Chamberlain made a name for himself by playing the handsome Dr. Kildare on TV, Raymond Massey co-starred.

1961-The Hazel TV show with Shirley Booth premiered.

1967- Speed Racer premiered in the U.S.

1970 - After spending three days making peace between King Hussein of Jordan and Yassir Arafat of the PLO, President Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt died of heart failure.: Five million people in the streets of Cairo attended the funeral and took over the coffin draped in the Egyptian flag and passed it above their heads across the city to the intended mausoleum. Nasser had been the first native leader of Egypt since the last Pharaoh Nectanebo, was driven out by Persian King Cyrus in the fourth century BC.

1976- Stevie Wonder released his famous album Songs in the Key of Life.

1978- Pope John Paul Ist dies after only 34 days in office. The rumor was some sort of pills were found by his bedside. The Vatican refused any autopsy, fueling many conspiracy theories.

1994- Michael Eisner cancelled plans for a theme park called Disney’s America in Northern Virginia.

2015- Scientists discover liquid water on the planet Mars.
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Yesterday’s Question: What does it mean to be circumspect?

Answer: To be cautious, careful or prudent.


Sept 27, 2016
September 27th, 2016

Question: What does it mean to be circumspect?

Quiz: In Lord of the Rings, Gandalf says to the Balrog “You Shall Not Pass!” But this statement was a famous phrase known to Tolkien. Who coined the phrase first?
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History for 9/27/2016
Birthdays: King Stefan Bathory of Poland, Thomas Nast, Arthur Penn, Mike Schmidt,
Meatloaf, William Conrad, Dick Schapp, Samuel Adams, George Cruikshank, Jayne Meadows, Wilford Brimley, Shaun Cassidy, Greg Morris, Amanda Detmer, Avril Lavigne is 32, Gwynneth Paltrow is 44

1538- The Battle of Preveza- The huge navy of German-Spanish Emperor Charles V, Venice, Genoa, the Pope and the Knights of Malta have a showdown with the Great Turkish fleet off Corfu. At one point the Turkish Corsair Barbarossa "Red Beard" tried to lure the Christian ships into the same Bay of Actium where the Roman Augustus defeated Anthony & Cleopatra 1,500 years before. The Turks won the battle but this may have had to do with the fact that the Christian admiral Andrea Doria was a Genoese who didn't mind seeing the Venetians get their butts kicked.
The one other significant fact of the battle was at one point Turkish galleys surrounded Venice's powerful new warship named 'La Galleon". It bristled with more cannon than anyone had ever seen on one boat. As the Turks attacked with light forecannon and prepared to board, the Venetian commander Carmandiolo ordered all his guns to fire at once- the first Broadside.
The tactics of using armed rowing galleys, which had ruled the Mediterranean since the Anthony & Cleopatra was now obsolete to square rigged sailing ships bristling with guns. The Turkish “Barbary Corsairs” would continue to raid Christian Mediterranean ships for another three hundred years.

1771-Young artist Francisco Goya entered a scholarship competition sponsored by the Art Academy of Parma. He lost to an artist named Bettino. Judges said about Goya’s work: "Crude and ugly colors".

1810- Battle of Bussaco. The Duke of Wellington stopped the French army of one of Napoleons Marshal Massena in Portugal. One of the reasons for Wellington’s successes in Spain and Portugal was he had a top rate intelligence gathering system run by a man named Grant.
Colonel Grant was once captured by the French and imprisoned in the fortress of Verdun but he escaped. While on the run back to his lines he paused to spend three weeks on holiday in Paris! He would brazenly walk down the Boulevard St. Germain in his bright redcoat uniform of His Majesties 11th Foot. When French gendarmes would ask him who he was, he’d reply he was from the United States Army! Since not many Parisians had ever seen an American before, nobody disputed his story.

1821- After a ten year struggle, Spain acknowledged the independence of Mexico. The commander of the last royal army in Mexico, Juan Ituribe, changed sides and tried to become Emperor of Mexico. He was later deposed by young republican officers like Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. One Mexican leader who was killed in the conflict, Francisco Menars, had been a guerrilla chief in Spain fighting Napoleons occupying forces.

1854- The first modern steamship disaster. The SS Arctic collided with the SS Vesta in the mid-Atlantic. The captains ordered women & children first into the boats but the crewmen rebelled and took the lifeboats for themselves. 85 lived, 485 died.

1894- New York’s Aqueduct Racetrack, the Big A, opened.

1903- THE WRECK OF OLD 97- The Southern Pacific express jumps the tracks at 90 miles an hour and inspires the first great country music hit. Written in 1924, recorded by everyone from Woody Guthrie to Johnny Cash.

1910- The Black & Decker tool company formed. Starting with the first portable electric drill in 1919 they became the first power tool company.

1934- “ I’M SICK OF THIS CAT & MOUSE GAME!” shouted Gangster Baby Face Nelson as he was cornered by two FBI agents on a rural road south of Chicago. While his gang and wife looked on in amazement Nelson boldly walked out in the open, down the middle of the road, his tommy gun blazing away at the G-Men. He killed them both but not before he was riddled with 17 bullets. He died the next day and was left in a ditch.

1935-13 year old singer Frances Gumm of the singing Gumm Sisters signed an exclusive contract with MGM Pictures. Louis B. Mayer changed Frances name to Judy Garland.

1937- J R R Tolkiens’ The Hobbit first appeared in bookshops.

1938- Bob Hope first sang “Thanks For the Memory” on his NBC radio show. It became a hit his movie appearance in the film “The Big Broadcast of 1938.”

1939- WARSAW becomes the first world capitol to fall to a Nazi Blitzkreig. The city was surrounded and bombarded for weeks. German generals after the war admitted they had stripped their western front to deal with the unexpected Polish resistance; had the British and French hurled their divisions across the Rhine there wouldn’t be much they could do. But the western front was quiet, the armies of Democracy mobilized too slowly. As the Polish defenders were slowly wiped out with bombs and shells Radio Warsaw kept broadcasting Chopin's Revolutionary Etude for Piano over and over as a sign that the city was still alive. Eventually the signal fell silent.

1939- The Mysterious Death of Gerhard Von Fritsch. General Von Fritsch was the architect of the rebuilt German Army after the World War defeat and oversaw it’s development into one of the most efficient killing machines in history. But the old Prussian nobleman was never an ardent Nazi and he grew resentful of Hitlers mad plans for world domination. Hitler had him forcibly retired and this day during the Polish campaign Von Fritsch was reported killed by snipers leading a patrol. Why a top general staff officer was leading a little patrol out in the weeds is a mystery. Was Von Fritsch courting death? Was he done in by the Gestapo and the ambush story a made up excuse?

1940- Germany, Italy and Japan sign a tripartite alliance aimed at the United States. The diplomat who signed for Japan, Mr Kurusu, would later be sent to Washington to talk peace while Pearl Harbor was being bombed.

1943- THE FOUR DAYS OF NAPLES- Naples was a city known for it’s tough street gangs. This day in advance of the American armies closing in the city the Neopolitans rose in revolt and fought the Germans with knives, scissors, clubs, rocks, anything they could get their hands on. Young actress Sophia Loren remembered seeing from her window a ten year old boy climb onto a Nazi tank and push a gasoline bomb through its view slit.

1944- Evangelist Aimee Semple MacPherson died in hospital from an overdose of sleeping pills. She was 53. MacPherson was one of the most powerful evangelists of the 1920s with thousands of followers donating millions of dollars.

1947- Disney’s film Fun and Fancy Free, featuring Mickey and the Beanstalk.

1950- After a week of hard house-to-house fighting the South Korean capitol of Seoul was declared liberated from North Korean occupation.

1954- The Tonight Show premiered. Steve Allen hosts.

1961- Hanna Barbera's "Top Cat" show premiered. Do you remember the words to the theme song..? "Top Cat, the most effectual- Top Cat, who's intellectual: Close friends get to call him T.C., Providing it's with dignity. Top Cat, the indisputable leader of the gang... He's the Boss he's a pip, he's the championship, He's the most tip-top, Top Cat !"

1964- The Warren Commission concluded that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in killing President John F. Kennedy. Today despite two investigations 8 out of 10 Americans still believe Oswald was part of a conspiracy. Even Lyndon Johnson had his doubts. Documents pertaining to the case, like Oswald's tax returns, and how he could re-enter the U.S. from Soviet Russia without a passport after renouncing his citizenship, are still kept top secret. Evidence like President Kennedy's brain disappeared from the lab and witnesses to contrary theories kept dying from car accidents and karate chops. Maybe we’ll know more when the CIA’s papers on the assassination are unlocked in 2060.

1977- Bob McKimson, Warner director of countless Foghorn Leghorn shorts, died of heart failure in front of Friz Freleng and Yosemite Sam animator Gerry Chiniquy while having lunch. Fellow artist Art Leonardi had asked Bob for a souvenir drawing that morning, Bob did him a Bugs Bunny but as he was leaving Art reminded him that he neglected to sign it. Bob said as he walked out "Oh, I'll get to it after lunch..."

1989- The Japanese corporate giant Sony purchased Columbia Pictures.

1996- The Taliban captured the Afghan capitol of Kabul and established their hardline fundamentalist regime, driven out temporarily by the US invasion in 2002.

2001- While America was still in shock over 9-11 and Anthrax attacks, President Bush in a speech at O’Hare Airport stated that although we may be attacked again at any moment, and it may be more horrible than 9-11, the best thing we could do… is to go shopping; “ go to the mall, vacation at Disneyworld….enjoy life the way we want it to be enjoyed….”

2003- Hours after the seasons final concert, in the dead the night, the historic bandshell at the Hollywood Bowl was demolished. After a long legal fight with preservationists, the historic 1929 structure designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, that Gershwin and Stokowski played in, was replaced with a new shell promising better acoustics. So, why not build a newer Coliseum in Rome? The old one is dilapidated and full of holes.
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Quiz: In Lord of the Rings, Gandalf says to the Balrog “You Shall Not Pass!” But this statement was a famous phrase known to Tolkien. Who coined the phrase first?

Answer: During World War I, the German Army was stopped at Verdun by French General Nivelle, whose communique thrilled the world “Elle n’est passé pas!” They Shall Not Pass!


Sept 26, 2016
September 26th, 2016

Quiz: In Lord of the Rings, Gandalf says to the Balrog “You Shall Not Pass!” But this statement was a famous phrase known to Tolkien. Who coined the phrase first?

Yesterday’s question answered below: ” Born with a silver spoon in his mouth?”
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History for 9/26/2016
Birthdays: George Gershwin, T.S. Elliot, John Chapman (also known as Johnny Appleseed)-1774, Winsor McCay-1869, Theodore Gericault -1791, Olivia Newton-John, Cheryl Tiegs is 68, Marty Robbins, Linda Hamilton, Pope Paul VI, Jack Lalanne, Melissa Sue Andersen, Phillip Bosco, James Cavaziel, Surena Williams, Linda Hamilton is 60.

303AD. Feast of Saints Damian & Cosmas . The Syrian twin doctors were nicknamed 'The Moneyless". They were martyred by being crucified, stoned, shot full of arrows, beheaded, and they had to read their own prescriptions.

1370- Battle of Nicopolis- During a pause in the Hundred Years War with the English , Count Egguerand de Coucy led the cream of French knighthood in one last Crusade to help the king of Hungary defeat the Turks. Instead their army was defeated and captured. Sultan Bajazet (nicknamed Ilderim- Lightning) was so fed up with crusaders, knights and chivalry that he refused to ransom them, but had them all beheaded.

1529- Sultan Sulieman the Magnificent lays siege to the city of Vienna. At one point he told his troops that if they didn't capture the city he would fill the moat with their genitals. (ouch!) The goal of the Ottoman Empire was the "Completion of the Crescent" . Starting in Turkey the southern side swung out through Palestine, Egypt to the Atlantic. Now the Northern arm must go through Hungary and Austria through France to Spain.

1560- A Spanish expedition under Don Pedro de Ursua left Peru for the deep Amazon. Lost in the limitless rainforest almost all his men die or go mad. The expedition at one point is taken over by a deranged conquistador named Aguirre who declared himself 'Emperor of the Kingdom of El Dorado'! The incident is the subject of Werner Herzog's famous 1972 movie "Aguirre the Wrath of God".

1575-Writer Miguel de Cervantes was captured by Barbary Pirates and held a slave for five years until his family ransomed him. He wrote Don Quixote in 1604.

1579- Sir Francis Drake in his ship the Golden Hind entered Plymouth Harbor England, after sailing around the world for 33 months. He raided Panama, Peru and visited a strange new place they called Nova Albion and we call California. The Golden Hind was kept in dry-dock in a place of honor for years, until it finally fell to pieces from dry rot.

1687- The Ancient GREEK PARTHENON WAS BLOWN UP during a minor Venetian raid on Turkish held Athens. A random shell ignited a gunpowder magazine the Turks had been storing inside of it. For two thousand years the Greek masterpiece had survived mostly intact. Later on in 1801 English Lord Elgin will back up his frigate to the shore and pry off the frieze marble sculptures for his collection.

1739- THE WAR OF JENKINS EAR- A small war between England and Spain started when a Spanish warship stopped an English merchant ship and cut off the ear of the captain named Jenkins. Jenkins ran around Parliament loudly calling for war and waving his ear in a bottle of spirits. He wore his hair long so some doubted that it was his ear in that bottle.

1820- In Defiance Missouri 85 year old frontier scout Daniel Boone died of acute fever and indigestion from eating too many yams. He did all of his exploring without a compass. Someone once asked him - Didn't you ever get lost? He replied, No, but I was once bewildered for three days...

1835- Donizetti’s opera Lucia De Lammermoor premiered.

1863- In a secret meeting, several Confederate generals agree to petition President Jefferson Davis to have their army commander Baxton Bragg, sacked for incompetence. Despite his just winning a victory- Chickamagua. Private soldiers like memoirist Sam Watkins reported that most of Bragg’s army hated him. But Pres Davis was the only man in the Confederacy who liked Bragg, and kept him in command. Bragg humiliated the mutineers and the rest of his staff refused to talk to him. His top cavalry leader, Nathan Bedford Forrest, once got angry enough to pull his sword on him. Baxton Bragg’s next battle, Missionary Ridge, was a decisive defeat.

1887- Emile Berliner patented the gramophone, rejecting Thomas Edison's cylinder in favor of a flat disc record on a turntable.

1892- The John Philip Sousa Band makes it's first public appearance.

1914- The Federal Trade Commission, or FTC created.

1918- THE MEUSE ARGONNE OFFENSIVE- To the rally cry of Marshal Foch “Everyone to the Battle!” the Allies began the final mass offensive from Belgium to Switzerland to finish the Germans and end World War I.

The Big Breakout was done by the fresh American divisions thrown forward by Pershing into the Argonne forest. Led by colorful officers like Douglas MacArthur, the Boy Colonel, who led his men calmly across No-Man's Land without a helmet or gun, and dressed in his West Point varsity sweater and cane. After fierce resistance the exhausted German lines finally caved in. The Offensive had started off in a dense fog. A whole Yank battalion got lost and surrounded by Germans. After being rescued they were hailed as the "Lost Battalion".

1926- Bullock's Wilshire department store opened. The Tea Room quickly became the in place for Hollywood Society to see and be seen in.

1937- "Queen of the Blues" Singer Bessie Smith died after a car accident in Mississippi. She crashed her Packard into a parked car. She was 43. One account said she died because she was refused treatment in a segregated hospital but the truth was she was treated by a white doctor at the scene and sent to the nearest hospital, which was a black one.

1939- Nazi scientists led by Rudolph Heisenberg met to discuss how the fission of uranium could be used to create a super bomb. Meanwhile in America Hungarian scientist Dr. Leo Szilard was warning the US government that they better start an atomic program fast.

1941- Max Fleischer's "Superman" cartoon debuts. They were much more expensive that the usual short cartoons- $90,000 to the usual $40,000, but Paramount wanted them.

1955- Eddie Fisher married Debbie Reynolds.

1957- The musical West Side Story opened. The legend goes composer Leonard Bernstein was in the hospital to be operated on for a deviated septum. While recuperating he ran into lyricist Steven Sondheim, who was also recovering from an operation. To pass the time while convalescing they started talking about the idea of an updated Romeo and Juliet set to music in the slums. One early title was Gang Way!

1960-THE NIXON-KENNEDY TELEVISED DEBATE. The first televised presidential debate that really ushered in the era of the "media-candidate". People who heard the debate on radio thought Vice President Nixon had won because he scored more points on issues. But far more who saw it on Television lauded Kennedy because of his cool, calm Presidential bearing as opposed to Nixon's pale sweaty-lipped nervousness.
As he watched the debate on TV, Nixon’s running mate, Senator Henry Cabot-Lodge III, murmured “ We’re gonna lose…” For years Nixon put down his electoral defeat to the fact that he refused stage makeup before going on camera.
One New York Times analyst recently referred to Kennedy & Nixon as the Roadrunner & Wile E. Coyote of American politics.

1961- Nineteen year old folk singer Bob Dylan made his debut in a Greenwich Village coffee house Gerde’s Folk City.

1961- Fidel Castro gave a speech to the United Nations that lasted 4 and 1/2 hours.

1962- The Beverly Hillbillies debuts. The story goes that CBS mogul William Paley disliked farm-humor type shows and this was premiered behind his back while he was on vacation.

1964-The premiere of Gilligan’s Island. The good ship Minnow was named for Newton Minnow, the FCC Chairman who first called television “A Vast Wasteland”.

1983- Filmation's "He-Man and the Masters of the Universe". The popular toy was originally supposed to be a product tie -in to the Arnold Schwarzenegger film Conan the Barbarian, but toy maker Mattel balked at the films R rated violence, so changed the toy's name. I Have The Powerrrrrr!!!

1987- A market research group called Q-5 tried to use a bank of computers number-crunching demographic surveys to design the ultimate safe, wholesome, politically-correct children's show. They came up with "The Little Clowns of Happytown"-. Of the 26 children's series in syndication it remained dead last in ratings, He-Man, Jem and G.I. Joe on top. The people have spoken.

1990- The Motion Picture Association changed the rating for the naughtiest movies from X to NC-17.

2001- While the ruins of the World Trade Center were still warm, Pres. George W. Bush asked Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to draw up military plans to attack Iraq, a nation that had nothing to do with the 9-11 attacks.

2004- Florida gets hit with its fourth hurricane in six weeks. Hurricane Jean killed 6 and caused billions in damage. The last time Florida was hit by that many hurricanes was in 1886.
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Yesterday Quiz: ” Born with a silver spoon in his mouth?”

Answer: In the Victorian Era in well-to-do families, the godparents of a newborn would celebrate the child by sending a gift of a spoon made of solid silver, for baby to have its first meal. So being born with a silver spoon came to mean being born with all the advantages.


Sept 25, 2016
September 25th, 2016

Quiz: What is the origin of the phrase ” Born with a silver spoon in his mouth?”

Yesterday’s Question Answered below: In the Fundamental Laws of the United States, only one person was forbidden by law to ever have his name on any statue or monument. Who is that?
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History for 9/25/2016
Birthdays: William Faulkner, Jean Phillipe Rameau, Mark Rothko, Dmitri Shoshtakovich, Sergei Bondarchuk, Phil Rizzutto the Scooter, Bob MacAdoo, Heather Locklear is 54, Scotty Pippin, Christopher Reeve, Mark Hamill is 65, Glen Gould, Barbera Walters is 87, Red Smith, Aldo Ray, Will Smith is 48, Michael Douglas 72 & Catherine Zeta-Jones-47

1066-Battle of Stamford Bridge -the last great Viking raid. The king of the Northmen Harald the Dragon landed an army at the old Roman city of Eboracum, now called in Norse Yoorvik or York. There he was met by the Anglo-Saxon army of King Harold Goodwinson. "Give us land." The Vikings said." We'll give you as much land as is needed to cover your bones!" said Harold, then defeated the Vikings in a huge battle. Harald the Dragon went down fighting as did his English ally Earl Tostig.
Almost as soon as the fight was over the Saxons learned a new invasion force had landed in the south near Dover, the Normans under Duke William of Normandy. King Harold having to fight in north England then rush by forced marches down to the south to fight another big battle, was a factor in his eventual defeat at Hastings.

1493- Christopher Columbus sailed from Cadiz for the New World on his second trip, this time with seventeen ships. He had been named Governor General of the Indies and Admiral of the Ocean Seas.

1513- Vasco Nunez de Balboa emerged from the Panamanian rainforest to view the great expanse of the western ocean. He calls it "Pacific" the "Peaceful Ocean."

1525- THE PEACE OF AUGSBURG- German Emperor Charles V wanted his rebellious people to knock off all this Protestant Reformation stuff and stay Catholic like him. But they fought him all over Germany in the Schmalkalden Wars. Even his own sister joined the new faith. Finally Charles made a peace. All could have religious toleration- well, not really. It just said whatever your local prince said was the official religion. This was the first official state acknowledgment that more than one Christian faith now existed.

1690- The first American newspaper published in Boston; " Publick Occurances Both Foreign and Domestick, Issue Number One" There was no number two because the Lord Governor of Massachusetts colony promptly closed it down.

1775- American patriot leader Ethan Allen was captured by the British while attempting an assault on Montreal. He was sent to England for prison, but exchanged for prisoners two years later.

1777- British Lord Howe after defeating Washington's army CAPTURED THE AMERICAN CAPITOL OF PHILADELPHIA. The rebel congress had picked up their Declaration of Independence and hightailed it for Harrisburg.
It was the American's luck that at this time the colonies were so loosely knit and decentralized that losing the "nation's capitol" wasn't very important to anyone except Philadelphians. Town Loyalists had a field day routing out rebel sympathizers. Because the Quakers espoused non-violence everyone thought they were on the other side, so they were singled out for especially rough treatment- pelted with stones, tar & feathers, etc.

Lord Howe complained to London that by now he had defeated the American army several times and captured it's capitol, yet the Rebellion showed no signs of dying out. America only had four major cities, Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Charleston and they all had been captured by His Majesties forces at one time or another. Except for little pirate John Paul Jones and a ship or two, they had sunk most of the American Navy. But the Yankees wouldn’t give up. Obviously a military solution to the American problem was not the answer." I can only pacify the colonies if I had two soldiers for every colonist." London responded by replacing Lord Howe.

1789- James Madison proposed a series of ten amendments be added to the new Constitution guaranteeing basic personal freedoms, the BILL OF RIGHTS. This day it was approved by Congress and sent to the states for ratification.

1828- The September Conspiracy. Simon Bolivar the Liberator was confronted by assassins sent by his own vice president to kill him. He escaped death thanks in part to his mistress, Manuela Saenz.

1840- By order of the Mexican Government, Slavery was outlawed in California- except.....Indian children were bought and sold for another ten years.

1887-The first Sears Catalog published.

1888- The beginning of the Sherlock Holmes adventure the Hound of the Baskervilles.

1890- Spurred on by the writings of John Muir and John Wesley Powell, Congress created Yosemite National Park in California.

1911- Groundbreaking in Boston for Fenway Park.

1917- After the Von Richtofen, the Red Baron, Germanys greatest air ace was Werner Voss. He shot down 48 enemy planes. Today Voss died on one of the most spectacular dogfights in aviation history. Alone in his baby-blue Fokker Triplane, Voss took on 8 British planes, all aces like himself and fought them all to a standstill. Shortly before Voss went down, the British saw his propellor stop turning. Did he run out of gas, or was his so badly wounded he could no longer control the engine? No one is sure. He was 20.

1918- Brazil declared war on Austria. This was seen as purely ceremonial, the Great War was just about over.

1933- Young writer John Huston was driving drunk on Sunset Blvd when he struck and killed a pedestrian. His father Walter Huston was a top movie star, so to avoid scandal MGM head Louis B. Mayer paid $46,000 to cover it up. John Huston went on to become a great Hollywood director and screenwriter.

1953- Alfred Hitchcock wrapped filming on his only 3D film, Dial M for Murder.

1957- President Eisenhower sends the bayonet wielding 101st Airborne to enforce the integration of Central High School in Little Rock Arkansas after the governor refused to use the National Guard. Three days earlier the Guard stood by doing nothing when a mob almost lynched a 15 year old girl trying to enter the school. She was saved by a sympathetic white friend. Eisenhower was not exactly colorblind himself, but the Supreme Court ordered school desegregation, and to the old general, orders were orders. Escorted by troops, nine black students entered the school through hordes of jeering whites. One girl was spit on so many times she had to wring her dress out in a sink afterward.

1965- The Beatles cartoon show premiered.

1980- John Bonham of Led Zeppelin was found dead of alcohol poisoning.

1984-THE RUBBERHEADS STRIKE- Disneyland workers including the actors who stroll the park in big Mickey and Goofy heads go on strike.

1988 – Former President Jimmy Carter’s brother Billy died. Billy Carter was one of the more embarrassing presidential relatives- he used his influence as a paid lobbyist for Khaddafy’s Libya and produced BillyBeer, undoubtedly the worst beer I ever tasted.
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Yesterday Quiz: In the Fundamental Laws of the United States, only one person was forbidden by law to ever have his name on any statue or monument. Who is that?

Answer: Benedict Arnold. This was a personal wish of George Washington himself. He wanted no credit and no memory of his treason to survive their generation. At Saratoga, Arnolds greatest victory, there is one statue. Not of him, but to his wounded leg with no name enscribed.


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