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May 5th, 2010 weds.
May 5th, 2010

Quiz: What do Senator Joe Leiberman, Benedict Arnold and Faisal Shahzad all have in common?

Yesterday’s Quiz Answered below; Why are newspaper reporters and photographers called Paparazzi??
History for 05/05/2010
Birthdays: Tyrone Power, Karl Marx, Elizabeth Cochrane called Nellie Bly, Soren Kierkegard, Alice Faye, James Beard, Michael Palin, Pat Carroll the voice of Ursula is 83, Patrick Ewing, John Rhys Davies, Lance Henriksen,

In Mexico and parts of the US, this is Cinco de Mayo (see 1862 below )

In Japan this is a holiday known as Children's Day.

National Teacher's Day.

National Cartoonist's Day.

1504 -Sir Anton of Burgundy, known as The Great Bastard, dies at 82. We don’t know much about this knight but you gotta love that nickname!

1534- King Henry VIII executed an English nun named Elizabeth Barton, who claimed to have been instructed by God to condemn the King’s divorce. She claimed supernatural forces had shown her the place in Hell being prepared for King Henry.

1789- King Louis XVI reluctantly convened an Estates General, the French national parliament, to get the country out of a fiscal crisis. He had fired the Swiss financier Necker, the only man who seemed capable of stopping the financial slide. An assembly like this had not been called since 1611. The Parliamentarians demanded permanent power and by refusing to adjourn when the Royal command came set in motion the French Revolution. They already had begun to refer to themselves as a National Assembly. The great orator Mirabeau answered the royal call to adjourn: "Go tell your master that Here the People Rule!"

1800- Shortly after winning his Federalist parties nod to run for re-election President John Adams was told by his wife Abigail Adams” Tis a pity that politicians would sacrifice all that Good men hold dear and Sacred just to win an election.” Of course, that doesn’t happen today, now does it?

1808- THE SPANISH ULCER- The Spanish Royal Family was having problems. King Charles IV, his chief minister Godoy who was also a lover of the Queen, the Infante Ferdinand VII and the Prince of Asturias were all trying to overthrow one another while Goya made funny looking portraits of them. French Emperor Napoleon lured them all to Bayonne in French territory with an offer to mediate. He said: “I’ve got a better idea. I’ll lock you all up in this fortress so my brother Joseph can be King of Spain.” Napoleon sent an army into Spain to enforce his idea but the Spanish people wouldn’t stand for it and fought first in the open and then as “guerrillas”- little wars. While Napoleon was trying to conquer the rest of Europe he had to keep troops in Spain fighting the guerrillas and the Duke of Wellington’s English. Spain was liberated in 1814 and the Royal Family promptly went back to arguing.

1821"...le Armee'......Josephine....." Napoleon Bonaparte died on the island of St.Helena at age 52. When the news reached England, King George IV was in the middle of trying to get divorced from his estranged wife Queen Caroline so he could marry his mistress. When an aide announced to him :"Sire! Your Majesty's greatest enemy has died !" George replied: " She is-? Oh, Thank the Lord !"

1827- In Tennessee a 17 year old tailor's apprentice named Andrew Johnson married 16 year old Eliza McArdle. Johnson was illiterate so one of his bride's first chores was to teach him to read and write. Johnson became the 17th President of the United States.

1862-HAPPY CINCO DE MAYO- Battle of Puebla-Mexican Juaristas under a daring young general named Porfirio Diaz defeated a French invasion force. After Benito Juarez’s presidency Porfirio Diaz made himself dictator and reigned until being ousted in the Mexican Revolution in 1910.

1864-Sherman begins his Atlanta campaign. Sherman told Grant:" You hold Lee down and give me enough troops and I can make Georgia howl !"

1889- THE PARIS WORLD EXHIBITION opened. This exposition was what the Eiffel Tower was built for: it was the centerpiece of this World's Fair.! Americans remembered it as the event where American painting first stood out on the world stage, despite being given a small gallery space between Bosnia and Denmark. The judging of the artwork was controversial. Here they are trying to show the world the uniqueness of American painting yet with not a single Copley, Bierstadt, Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer or Mary Cassatt was accepted. James McNeill Whistler considered himself American although he lived most of the time in London. When the show was announced he patriotically entered a dozen paintings but the American judges rejected them all. He angrily re-submitted them as a British artist and won a gold medal.

1891-Carnegie Hall in New York opens. One old musician told me the acoustics are so perfect that you can fart in the trumpet section and you'll be heard in the second balcony.

1932-Charles Revson founded the Revlon Cosmetics Company.

1942-The last U.S. forces on the besieged Island of Corregidor surrendered to the Japanese. General MacArthur was ordered to escape to Australia, leaving his friend Johnathan Wainwright to lead his men into captivity. But when he was asked to recommend General Wainwright for the Congressional Medal of Honor, MacArthur refused. "The Medal of Honor cannot be awarded to a general who pulls down Old Glory and surrenders!". MacArthur had Wainwright at his side to sign the surrender documents on the U.S.S. Missouri in 1945.

1945- In a desperate plan to get at America, Japanese generals tried tying bombs to high flying atmospheric weather balloons that could catch the jet stream across the Pacific. This day the only World War Two casualties on the U.S. mainland occurred when an Oregon woman Elsie Mitchell and her two children were killed by one of these strange bombs while picnicking.

1953- Broadway Director Jerome Robbins testified before Joseph McCarthy’s House UnAmerican Activities Committee HUAC and named names. Ironically Robbins went on to direct two of his biggest 1960s hits “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and the Fiddler on the Roof using blacklisted actors like Zero Mostel, Beatrice Arthur and Jack Gilford, who all hated him.

1960- Soviet Premier Khruschev announces to the world press the shooting down of an American U-2 spy plane over Russia. President Eisenhower vigorously denied anything of the sort until Khruschev in a world media news conference produced the planes wreckage and pilot Lt. Francis Gary Powers. The incident not only deepened the Cold War, but for the first time in modern history a U.S. President was caught lying his head off. But sadly, not the last.

1961- Alan Shepard became the first American in space on board Friendship VII. The rocket took him 115 miles into space but not high enough to achieve an orbit. That was done one year later by John Glenn. Shepard was kept on the ground in his capsule for so long he had to pee in his suit. In the upside down position the fluid ran up his back and puddles in his helmet behind his head. Ick.

1968- Albert Dekker, star of monster movies like Dr. Cyclops, was found hanged in his bathroom, handcuffed, and wearing ladies lingerie. A narcotics needle was sticking in his arm. The police declared it an “ auto-erotic episode that had gone wrong."

1975- Anne Rice’s novel The Interview With The Vampire first published.

1981- Young IRA supporter Bobby Sands made himself a martyr in the Northern Ireland crisis by dying of a hunger strike while in jail. He went 66 days without food.

1985- President Ronald Reagan started a firestorm of controversy among WWII veterans when he laid a wreath in Germany at a cemetery in Bitburg that contained graves of 49 Nazi Waffen-SS soldiers. Some of them may have participated in the infamous Malmedy Massacre of US prisoners.

Quiz: Why are newspaper reporters and photographers called Paparazzi?

Answer: In his 1960 film La Dolce Vita, Frederico Fellini created a rapacious news photographer who’ll stop at nothing to get a shot of a celebrity. He named him Paparazzo after Italian slang for an annoying mosquito. Since then, the name has been given to the mass of predatory journalists who go beyond all taste and dignity to get a cheap sensationalist scoop. In other words, most of the modern media.