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Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera are in animation valhalla now, but their company asked me to moderate a panel saluting their work at the San Diego Comicon this year. Allison riding around on her roller skates, Clarence handing out Blackwing pencils by the bushel, Joe walking on the roof of his house after the 1993 earthquake. It will be held on thursday July 27th at 2:45PM in the conference rooms. We'll spin famous cartoons and tell tales of working at 3400 Cahuenga Blvd. I hope they run some Augie Doggy and Doggy Daddy! How about Squiddly Diddly?


Welcome to July named for Julius Caesar. Before that the Romans called it month number five- "Quintilicus". They had a ten month calendar, and ran out of names after Juno (June). So thank Julius Caesar that you don't have to celebrate the Fourth of Quintilicus.

Birthdays: Tommy Dorsey, George Sand, Charles Laughton, James Cagney, Princess Diana of Wales would have been 46, Twyla Tharp, Carl Lewis, Jamie Farr, Sidney Pollack, Wally "Famous"Amos, Olivia DeHavilland is 91, Estee Lauder, Debbie Harry, Genevieve Bujold, Karen Black, Dan Ackroyd. Andre Crouch, Pamela Anderson is 40, Liv Tyler is 30

1863- Battle of Gettysburg- no animators present.

1867-HAPPY CANADA DAY-( celebrated tomorrow) By treaty Her Majesties North American Colonies of Upper and Lower Canada, Maritimes, Prince Rupert Land and diverse other holdings are incorporated as the Autonomous Dominion of Canada. This master plan to consolidate the British Empire's colonial administration was invented by Lord Caernarvon, who Queen Victoria nicknamed "Twitters."

1898- Teddy Roosevelt charges up San Juan Hill- no animators present.

1916- 1916- THE SOMME- During World War One while the French and Germans were stalemated at Verdun the British began the "Big Push" also known as the First Battle of the Somme. The British high command were very confident this offensive would open the way to Berlin. But after four months of hell and one million casualties all they managed to do was move the front line 5 miles.

Young Captain Robert Graves was sent back to England for an operation on his deviated septum. He missed the attack while his unit suffered 60% casualties. Graves survived to write books like " I Claudius". At one point he was in hospital with poet Wilfred Owen and A.A.Milne (Winnie the Pooh). Another lieutenant there named J.R.R.Tolkein was jotting down notes about old Norse-Celtic warriors and wizards for a future book. Some analysts feel his fascination with sacrifice in the face of hopeless odds began at the Somme.

1941- Animation director Tex Avery stormed out of Leon Schlesinger's Looney Tunes Studio when Jack Warner ordered cuts in his Bugs Bunny cartoon, A Wild Hare. Leon Schlesinger put him on a four week suspension without pay, but Avery had already lined up a gig at MGM.

1941- During the television coverage of a Brooklyn Dodgers-Philadelphia Phillies baseball game the first FCC sanctioned Television Commercial aired. It was for the Bulova Watch Company.

1945- Bill Mauldin's wartime comic strip "Willie and Joe' ends it's run along with the European front line edition of Stars and Stripes magazine. Peanuts creator Charles Schulz said no one could draw mud and the misery of the average GI like Mauldin could. He even drew cartoons while under enemy fire.

Mauldin was once chewed out by General Blood & Guts Patton for making Willie & Joe so slovenly and cynical, making for a negative image of the American Fighting Man. Seesh...everybody’s a critic!

1945- NY Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia read the Sunday funnies over the radio because of a newspaper strike.

1946- The first peacetime A-Bomb detonated in the Bikini Islands. The army wanted to study the effects of the bomb so they parked old Axis warships, buildings and dummys around it, as well as chained down animals. They soldiers nicknamed the bomb 'Gilda' after the Rita Hayworth movie. When Ms. Hayworth heard her name was being used to incinerate 1,500 innocent sheep, horses and elephants she collapsed in shock. The inhabitants of the island were removed and to this day the islands are uninhabitable. A cloud of radiation also killed the crew of a Japanese fishing boat in the area. But the island's name gave a neat idea to French designer Jacques Clauzel what to call his daring new ladies’ two piece swimsuit.

1958- Does She or Doesn’t She?- Clairol hair dye introduced.

1963-U.S. POST OFFICE introduced Zip Codes.

1966- The US Medicare Program began. President Lyndon Johnson
presented the first Medicare Card to retired President Harry Truman. At the time it was felt there was no need to include prescription drugs in the program since their cost was so low. Since then while general inflation rate has been nil to 1% prescription drugs average inflation rate is 400%.

1970- Hanna & Barbera’s primetime animated series "Where’s Huddles?"

1972- Ms. Magazine started publication.

1981- The Wonderland Murders. Notoriously over-endowed porn star Johnny Holmes was implicated in a gangland murder. In a Los Angeles home known to be involved in drug dealing. four people were found beaten to death with a steel pipe. Holmes was picked up and tried as an accomplice but was acquitted. Hung jury. -I’m sorry, I just had to say it! His fate hung in the balance! It was all of a package! All-right, I’ll stop.

1996- the movie Dinosaur Valley Girls premiered.

1998- Barbara Streisand married James Brolin.