BACK to Blog Posts

February 15th 2008 fri.
February 15th, 2008

Question: All through World War Two the preferred American graffiti was a drawing of a big nosed man looking over a wall and the words KILROY WAS HERE, written over it. Was Kilroy a real person?

Answer to yesterdays question below: Name a US president who’s name ends in a vowel.
History for 2/15/2008

Birthdays: Galileo Galilei, French King Louis XV, Michel Praetorius, Susan B. Anthony, Charles Tiffany, John Barrymore, Matt Groening, Jane Seymour, Cesar Romero, Gale Sondergard the Spider Woman, Melissa Manchester, Claire Bloom, Chris MacDonald, Chris Farley, Marisa Berenson is 61

1720- Young Francois Voltaire had begun a career as a successful playwright with his first play Oedipe. But his second play Artemire was booed as loudly as his first play was cheered. The irate poet ran up on stage and argued with the audience for over an hour about its merits. But the audience still thought the play sucked.

1815- Things on the Island of Elba had gotten so quiet that the British officer in charge of Napoleon's exile, Sir Colin Cambell, informed his prisoner he was going on holiday to see his girlfriend in Italy. “Will you be back by the 28th?” Napoleon asked. “Yes, why ?” Oh, nothing. it's just my sister Princess Pauline is planning a party and we'd hate for you to miss it." In reality Nappy planned to escape and reconquer Europe. Pauline had her party on the 25th. Sir Colin returned to find his prisoner, and his career in the army, had flown the coup.

1898- The U.S.S. Battleship MAINE EXPLODES in Havana Harbor, killing 252 sailors. The cause was never confirmed, it may have been a spontaneous igniting of fumes in the gunpowder magazine, but the American public was urged to blame Spanish sabotage.
The next day a motor launch out to the site of the disaster rescued the ships cat clinging to the mainmast protruding from the water. U.S. public opinion against Spain was pushed by "yellow journalists" like William Randolph Hearst and Josef Pulitzer who told his correspondent artist Frederick Remington: "You supply the pictures, I'll supply the war."American expansionists had been planning a war with Spain since 1896 and had tried to pick a fight over Cuba in 1871 and 1874. President McKinley, who Teddy Roosevelt described as having :"no more backbone than a chocolate eclair" gave in and declared War on Spain to cries of "Remember the Maine!". More Americans were killed on the USS Maine than in the entire Spanish American War, which was fought and over by December of the same year. America emerges as a power player on the world stage.

1933- ATTEMPTED ASSASINATION OF FDR- Unemployed anarchist Guisseppe Zangara shot a pistol at President-elect Franklin Delano Roosevelt at a rally in Chicago. He missed FDR but killed the Mayor of Chicago Anton Czermak. Guisseppe
Zangara was tried and sent to the electric chair the following month.

1947- During the anti-Communist witchhunts the FBI revoked the visa of famed documentary filmmaker and founder of the National Film Board of Canada John Grierson because they thought his politics were subversive.

1954- Future President and b-movie star Ronald Reagan tried doing a stand-up act at the Las Vegas Ramona Room with the "Honey Brothers", a comedy troupe similar to Abbot & Costello.

1969- President Richard Nixon combined the twin holidays of Lincoln’s Birthday Feb. 12th and Washington’s Birthday Feb.22nd into one three day weekend and called it President’s Day. So instead of two days off in February you have one with no emotional meaning to it. Nixon does it to us again!

1984- Touchstone Pictures created so the Walt Disney Company could do more adult movies. Their first film was Splash., starring a tastefully naked Darryl Hannah.

1989- The last Soviet troops leave Afghanistan.

1991- In a speech President George I Bush Ist invited dissident elements in Iraq to rise up against Saddam Hussein in Iraq. He declared: ”The Day of the Dictator is Over!” Iraqi Kurds, Shiites and Marsh Arabs rose in revolt, confident the US would back them. The US instead pulled out and left them to be bombed and nerve-gassed by Saddams’ Republican Guard. Maybe as many as 500,000 died..

1994- After months of insane bidding, Viacom’s Sumner Redstone beat out QVC’s Barry Diller to buy Paramount Pictures. The cost is $20 billion, although the studio’s net worth was estimated at $8 billion. When asked, Diller replied: “What’s done is done. Next.”

2002- Scientists announce the first discovery of fossilized Dinosaur vomit.

2003- Millions of protestors march in cities from Hollywood to Kiev to Capetown to protest US plans to attack Iraq. Nearly a million marched in London alone. Pres. Bush II invaded anyway.
Yesterday’s Quiz: In 1988 hesitant Democratic Presidential candidate Mario Cuomo joked:” The American people would never elect a president who’s name ended in a vowel”. This year we’ve seen Rudy Giuliani, and now Barak Obama. So, have any U.S. Presidents had a name that ended in a vowel?

Answer : What Super Mario may have been saying, in so many words, is that almost all US presidents have been WASPS ( White Anglo-Saxon Protestants) ( all except Kennedy) but there were four presidents who’s name did end in a vowel. James Monroe, Franklin Pierce, Millard Fillmore and Calvin Coolidge.