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March 24th, 2008 monday
March 24th, 2008

Tonight the Motion Picture Academy is hosting a show entitled THEY PUT THE LOONEY IN TUNES- celebrating the centennials of Tex Avery and Mike Maltese. See for details.

Later in May will be the 100th anniversary of the birth of Joe Grant.
Quiz: What is the origin of the custom of “Knock on Wood”-?

Answer to yesterday's question below: What does it mean to be Hoisted on your own Petard?
History for 3/24/2007
Birthdays: Steve McQueen,Ferlingetti,Ub Iwerks (the first Disney animator), John Wesley Powell, Harry Houdini aka Eric Weiss, Edward Weston, Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle, Clyde Barrow of Bonnie & Clyde, Elton John, Bob Mackie, Robert Carradine, Laura Flynn-Boyle, Alyson Hannigan, Joe Barbera

To the ancient Romans this was the Day of Blood- when the priests of the Goddess Cybele would end a nine day fast by walking through the streets practicing self-flagellation with whips, atoning for sins with blood. The Christians later called this Good Friday, which ends the fast of Lent.

1241- The Mongol hordes sent into Europe by Subotai, under Vuldai and the Tartar Paidar burn the Polish capitol of Krakow. A trumpeter trying to give a warning from a church tower was shot through the throat with an arrow. Since then in his memory in the town square every hour on the hour a trumpeter plays the bugle call and stops short at the same note -The Heynal. I was there a few years ago, and believe me, it IS played every hour on the hour !

Hey, got any Tartar sauce?

1603- Queen Elizabeth Ist of England dies of a gum inflammation, James VI of Scotland, son of Mary Queen of Scots, becomes King James I Stewart of the United Kingdom. Elizabeth was 69 and had ruled England since she was 25. She was famous for being frugal but she loved extravagant clothing. At her death she left 2,000 dresses. When an Anglican bishop in a sermon tried to criticize her for vanity, the Queen warned him to hold his tongue, ”ere ye may attain Heaven before your time”.

1635 - Jacques Callot, French cartoonist/engraver, dies at about 42

1882 -In Berlin German scientist Robert Koch announced the discovery of the bacillus that caused Tuberculosis, enabling a vaccine to at last be created. T.B. or consumption, was the AIDS of the 1800's- killing everyone from Frederic Chopin to Doc Holliday to Aubrey Beardsley. Today there is a new strain of Super-TB spreading from underdeveloped countries. In Franz Schubert's time it was a strange turn-on for young men to date girls they knew were dying of consumption. Apparently the disease made one especially beautiful just before the end, like a candle flaring up before it goes out.

1912- Sir Arthur Conan-Doyles adventure novel The Lost World, first published in magazine installments. It was the first of the Land-of-the-Dinosaurs type stories.

1934-The Major Bowes Original Amateur Hour debuted on radio. It became a national craze to see who could be a future star. Frank Sinatra was among their finds. The show eventually moved to television and later spawned the Ted Mack Amateur Hour, Chuck Barris the Gong Show, Star Search and American Idol.

1939- The film the Hound of the Baskervilles premiered with actors Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson . They became the most famous interpreters of the characters and went on to make a dozen more films.

1943 - The first Japanese anime’ feature "Momotaro's Sea Eagles" premiered.

1954- The Nash-Kelvinator Company and the Hudson Car Company merge to form American Motors Corporation or AMC automobiles.

1955- Tennessee William's "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" debuts at Broadway's Marosco Theater. Barbera Bel-Geddes was the first Cat and Burl Ives was " Big Daddy".

1958- Elvis Presley inducted into the Army.- G.I. Blues!

1962- No one had been a more loyal supporter of President John F. Kennedy than Frank Sinatra. The singer got his Ratpack friends to stump for the candidate, and even got Mafia money to support a man who’s brother Bobby was busy busting the rackets in Congress. But the President was warned that association with such a known libertine would cost him family values votes one day. So when Kennedy next visited Palm Springs he not only refused an invitation to stay with Sinatra, but he stayed with more wholesome singer Bing Crosby, a Republican! Sinatra in a rage took a sledgehammer to the extra guest cottage he was preparing for JFK, and broke off his friendship with JFK’s brother-in-law, actor Peter Lawford.

1973- In Buffalo a drunk fan bit rock singer Lou Reed on the ass.

1989- A drunk captain of the supertanker Exxon Valdez runs aground and spills 11 million gallons of crude oil in Prince William Sound Alaska. Insiders claim Exxon fabricated the drunk-captain story to excuse the inadequate detection and warning equipment. The route was well charted and easy to maneuver.

1999- The U.S. and Nato begin bombing Belgrade over Serbian attacks on Albanians in Kossovo.

2005- A Colorado Rockies baseball game was called off on account of bees. The bee swarms were attracted by the coconut oil in the pitchers hair gel.
Yesterday's Question: What does it mean to be hoisted on your own petard?

Answer: in the Middle Ages a petard was an explosive charge that was attached to a castle door or drawbridge to blow it open. Hoisted meant being thrown up into the air. So Hoisted on your own petard means to be blown up by your own bomb.