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Blog Posts from November 2009:

November 1st, 2009 sun.
November 1st, 2009

Question: Who said:” He’s a sonofabitch, but he’s OUR sonofabitch!”

Question: Which American President never lived in the White House? George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson or Harry Truman?
History for 11/1/2009
Welcome to November, Roman Month #9-Novembrius.

Birthdays: Marie Antoinette, President Warren Harding, Stephen Crane, Marcel Ophuls, Benevenuto Cellini, Larry Flynt, Walter Matthau, Fernando Valenzuela, Lyle Lovett, Willie D, Rick Allen of Def Leppard, Jenny McCarthy

To the ancient Romans this was the Feast of Pomona, Goddess of the Fruit Harvest. The Early Christian Church they changed the name to the feast to All Saints Day. Pomona's offerings were apples, a staple of the Roman diet. The custom of bobbing for apples at Halloween comes from a pagan ritual.

79AD- Erupting since last August and burying the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum, Mount Versuvius finally calmed down.

1290- This was the deadline King Edward Ist Longshanks ( the bad guy in Braveheart ) set for all Jews to leave England. Many drowned in small boats crossing the Channel. Once in France the French king told them they had to leave in one year. Jews would not be allowed to resettle in England until Oliver Cromwell’s time in the 1650s.

1478- THE SPANISH INQUISITION- At the request of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain, Pope Sixtus IV promulgated a bull setting up the office of the Holy Inquisition in Spain. The royal couple tired of civil fighting among Moslems, Jews, Christians and converts in their country. As they united the land under their one rule, they wanted Spain united under one orthodox doctrine. The Inquisition, also called La Suprema, dominated life and thought for centuries. Other offices for the Holy Inquisition were set up in Portugal and Brazil.

The Inquisition was administered by the Dominican monks and supported by an elite group of nobles called the Santa Hermandad,or the Sacred Brotherhood. In 1709 King Phillip V broke with tradition by refusing to attend an Auto da Fe, a public festival featuring the burning of heretics. The Spanish Inquisition was stopped by Napoleon’s French invasion of 1808, but restored after liberation. It finally died out in 1819.

1503 –IL PAPA TERRIBLE- Giuliano Della Rovere made Pope Julius II. The Holy Father delayed his coronation until his astrologers told him the stars were right. Julius drove out Caesar and Lucretia Borgia and fought in armor more than as he prayed. In his 10 year reign he'll commission the Sistine Ceiling, the rebuilding of St.Peter's Basilica ,Michelangelo's Moses, Raphael's "The School of Athens", created the Swiss Guard (uniform designed by Michelangelo), dug up the Laocoon, conquered most of Central Italy and left the Vatican treasury a surplus for the first time in decades.

He was known for quotes like:"Let the whole world perish provided I get my way!" One critic wrote how during a festival where the Pope is supposed to kiss the feet of the poor Julius was careful to hold them up, then kiss his own bejeweled fingers. Still he was one of the greatest of the Popes, called "Il Papa Terrible'" the Terrible Father.

1512- Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel Ceiling is unveiled to the public for the first time.

1604- William Shakespeare's play "Othello the Moor of Venice" first performed.

1755- THE GREAT LISBON EARTHQUAKE-85% of the city destroyed, 50,000 killed, gallows erected around the city to punish looters. The earthquake happened on a Sunday at 9:40AM so most killed were in Church hearing Mass when the rooftops collapsed on them. This irony was seized upon by humanist philosophers like Votaire and Diderot- that a overwhelmingly Catholic city like Lisbon could be struck in such a way while Paris and London went on their sinful ways. This said to them that the great earthquake was not God’s punishment but a coldly impersonal force of Nature. This notion coupled with Sir Edmund Halley's discovery that Comet's are not a message from the Diety but an equally natural phenomena led to the growing disillusionment with religion engendered by the Age of Enlightenment.

1776- Mission San Juan De Capistrano founded on the California coast.

1800- President John Adams, moves into the White House, first president to do so. First Lady Abigail Adams had her wash hung in the East Room because the walls weren't in yet so it had a nice breeze. The first three buildings erected in Pierre L'Enfant's new federal capitol city are the House of Congress, the White House, and Conrad’s Tavern. The first business in Washington City that was not part of the government was a brewery. Pennsylvania Avenue was still dotted with tree stumps. Abigail Adams wrote that Georgetown was “The very dirtiest hole I have ever seen.”

1835- Davey Crockett, after losing his bid for re-election to Congress tells his Tennessee voters:" You can all go to Hell, I'm going to Texas!"

1858- The British Crown takes direct control of India from the Honorable East India Company. The period known as "The Raj" begins.

1880- Pat Garrett elected sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico Territory.

1913- Notre Dame quarterback Gus Doreias throws the first "Forward Pass" to center Knute Rockne. The forward pass was the solution to a request to the coach of Notre Dame by Teddy Roosevelt to do something to make the game more mobile and less bone crunching, since parents were beginning to complain about the injuries to their sons.

1918- The Hungarian subjects of the disintegrating Austro-Hungarian Empire declared themselves to be the new independent nation of Hungary.

1920- The first issue of American Cinematographer.

1936-Benito Mussolini in a speech coined the term “The Axis” for his new alliance with Hitler’s Germany. “There is now an “axis of mutual interest between Berlin and Rome”

1938- At Pimlico in Maryland this day was the famous horse race between War Admiral and Sea Biscuit, the two finest thoroughbreds of the age. War Admiral was sleek and aristocratic, sired from the blood of the great champion Man of War. Sea Biscuit by contrast looked ungainly and lame. But in the end The Biscuit he won the race by three lengths. The race was heard live on radio by one in three Americans.

1939- Rockefeller Center in New York City opened.

1945- OPERATION OLYMPIC- If the Atomic Bombs had failed to end the war, this was the planned date for the U.S. Invasion of Japan. Based on the casualty figures to take Okinawa and Iwo Jima, Gen.MacArthur estimated 100,000 U.S. soldiers would be killed or wounded to land on the beaches of Kyushu, another 50,000 to take Tokyo and a guerrilla war in the mountains possibly lasting until 1948. The Japanese had stockpiled 2,200 kamikaze planes in mountain bunkers and had mobilized the civilian population to fight with spears for the Motherland. The Soviets were already in the Kurile Islands and had timed their mainland invasion for July. So the resulting actions would probably divide the island into a North Japan, South Japan situation. But things turned out differently...

1946- THE FIRST NBA BASKETBALL GAME- The first professional game was the New York Knicks 68, the Toronto Huskies 66. The first basket was scored by Ozzie Sheckmann.

1950- Two Puerto Rican nationalists, Oscar Coralzo and Griselo Torresola, tried to shoot their way to President Truman. Truman was staying at Blair House while the White House was being renovated. The two assassins were shot down by the Secret Service in a furious gun battle at the foot of his stairs. Secret serviceman Leslie Coffelt shot Collazo as he himself was killed. President Truman was awoken from a nap and went to the window to see what the noise was all about. " Get down ya G-ddamn fool !" the agents shouted at him.

1951- As part of their training, US soldiers were made to witness an atomic bomb test at Desert Rock Nevada, then marched across the radioactive field.

1959- Hockey goalie Jacques LaPlante became the first to wear a face mask during play. Before this many Hockey goalies lost their front teeth.

1968- To replace the outmoded Hays Production Code, the Motion Picture Ratings System introduced-"G,M, R, and X"- Later PG, PG-13, R and NC-17".

1972-John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil Company, who owned the Esso brand of gasoline, changed their name to the Exxon Corporation. Esso- S-O, Standard Oil, get it?

1988- Jeff Goldblum married Gena Davis. They divorced several years later.

2001- President George W. Bush signed an executive order that declared that the President and Vice President can keep their secret records sealed in perpetuity. The 1978 Presidential Records Act ordered that Presidential records be made public after 12 years. But not for Dubya and Cheney. We’ll see if this act is rescinded.
Question: Which American President never lived in the White House? George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson or Harry Truman?

Answer: George Washington oversaw the construction of the White House, but he himself would never live in it. John Adams was the first occupant in 1800.