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April 28, 2017
April 28th, 2017

Quiz: What is a seer-sucker suit?

Answer to Yesterdays Quiz- What does it mean to raise your hackles?
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History for 4/28/2017
Birthdays: English King Edward IV (1442), President James Monroe, Lionel Barrymore, Oskar Schindler, Carolyn Jones-aka Morticia Addams of the TV Addams Family, Ann Margaret is 77, Jay Leno is 67, Saddam Hussein, Jean Redpath, James Baker III, Penelope Cruz is 43, Jessica Alba is 38, Godzilla is 63- see below.

In ancient Egypt today was Wake up and Smell the Breeze Day, The first known Spring Festival in history. As part of the holiday, Egyptians ate a small dried fermented fish called Fessig, which they thought prevented diseases blown in by the desert.

357AD- Roman Emperor Constantius II visited Rome for the first time. Like his father Constantine he was now ruling the Empire from Constantinople. Later Western emperors preferred to rule from Milan for faster access to the Rhine or Danube frontiers.

1192- CONRAD OF MONFERRAT SLAIN BY THE ASSASSINS OF ALAMUT-
The word "assassin" comes from "hash-a-shin" or "eaters of Hashish". Their leader Sheik Ibn-Abdel Sinan, was called "The Old Man of the Mountain", established his murder cult on a mountain fortress in Iran. He got his followers stoned in a pleasure garden filled with pretty girls, telling them they had just spent time in Paradise. And if they were good he’d let them in for more visits. This is the origin of followers so fanatically devoted that all Abdel Sinan had to do is point, and a man would leap off the battlements to his death.

Sheik Abdel Sinan ran his sect like an extortion racket throughout the Middle East. In exchange for gold, he wouldn't have one of his stoned followers knife you. When the Crusaders arrived in the Holyland, no one had clued them in to this system. So when Conrad laughed off the Assassin's emissary, he was stabbed by hitmen disguised as Christian monks.

Conrad was the other leader of the Third Crusade with Richard Lionheart and Phillip Augustus of France. Many believed Richard paid Abdel Sinan to murder Conrad. That's the reason Richard was imprisoned on his way home by Leopold of Austria, Conrad's uncle. The Assassins were finally exterminated a century later by the Mongols, whose horde happened to be riding by when they thought their fortress would be good practice to destroy.

1376-The Good Parliament- English parliaments in the Middles Ages were held so rarely that they were remembered by nicknames "The Rump, The Mad, The Thoroughly Bollucks'd-Up, etc. This parliament achieved new rights by electing the first speaker and demanding the impeachment of a bad minister who was an appointee of the King.

1686- Sir Issac Newton published the first volume of his Principia Mathematica, outlining the Theory of Gravity. The earliest account of the apple story was in 1738. Voltaire writing about Newton claimed his niece told him when the scientist had left Cambridge for the country during the Great Plague of 1666- "He observed an apple falling from a tree and fell into a deep meditation on what was this force that drew all objects in a straight line that until interrupted would continue to the center of the Earth."

1789-THE MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY. The HMS Bounty had been sent around the world to bring back breadfruit samples to see if the plant could be a nutritional supplement for slave laborers in Jamaica and Bermuda. During the return voyage from Tahiti the crew led by first mate Fletcher Christian, set upon the Captain, William Bligh, and set him adrift in a rowboat to die. They then sail with their Tahitian families to settle permanently on an island.

They choose Pitcairn Island because of it's remoteness. Squabbles arose among the British and natives and their leader Fletcher Christian was killed while tending his sweet potatoes. Today a majority of the islands inhabitants claim ancestry from the Bounty mutineers.
Captain Bligh got to safety after navigating his little rowboat 1,500 miles to East Timor with almost no food, an unparalleled feat of seamanship. He was cleared by an Admiralty board and served with distinction in the Napoleonic Wars, although another ship mutinied on him. On top of everything else, when Bligh got home he discovered his wife had been made pregnant by the nephew of the Duke of Wellington -'Wicked Willie' Wellesley.

Like many 'famous' incidents, this passed by it's time with little or no notice. What made the Mutiny on the Bounty world famous was a best selling novel written in the 1920's by two Americans, Charles Nordoff and James Norton Hall, who met when pilots in the World War I Lafayette Escadrille. Then it became a popular movie with Clark Gable.

1813- Marshal Kutusov, the one-eyed Russian general who chased Napoleon out of Russia, died the following year of exhaustion.

1828- English monarchs kept a menagerie of exotic animals at the Tower of London. Most were gifts from foreign rulers. Lions, apes, giraffes, canaries and more. By the XIX Century the crown allowed tourists to visit and it became quite the attraction. When old soldier the Duke of Wellington became Constable of the Tower, he found the animals and the tourists annoying. The Tower should be a military bastion, not a tourist attraction!
So this day all the animals were moved to a new spot in Regents Park, and the London Zoo was created.

1881- Notorious gunfighter Billy the Kid had given himself up to New Mexico authorities on condition he would get a fair trial. That fair trial sentenced him to hang. He was being kept shackled in the town of Maisella New Mexico by two deputies. One deputy named Pecos Bob Ollinger enjoyed tormenting the Kid with descriptions of how gruesome his death was going to be- dancing in the air, slowly choking, eyes bulging, etc. One night Ollinger left his shotgun by the door and crossed the street to have dinner.

The Kid asked the other deputy to unshackle him so he could use the outhouse. A friend had secretly planted a gun in the outhouse. When Ollinger returned he found his deputy dead and Billy the Kid pointing his shotgun right at his face. "Hello Bob!" the smiling kid said, then he blew his head off.

1897- The first distress signal sent by wireless at sea. The S.O.S. (Save Our Ship) code wasn't invented until 1912.

1925- Tory minister Mr. Winston Churchill announced in Parliament that Britain was going back on to the Gold Standard. The result was an economic panic, nationwide strikes and a widening of the postwar depression already affecting Germany and France. Churchill's party led by Stanley Baldwin would be kicked out of office in the elections of 1926, and Churchill would remain in political oblivion until 1940.

1925- T.S. Elliot landed a job at Faber & Fabers Publishing. His enabled the poet to quit his job as a bank teller at Lloyds and get serious about his literary career.

1937- Italy’s movie studio Cinecitta’ dedicated.

1944- EXERCISE TIGER-The greatest coup of Axis espionage. German spies discovered that the allies were going to rehearse their D-Day invasion landings off Slapton Sands, England. They sent a surprise attack of torpedo boats across the Channel to catch the defenseless transports packed with troops, bobbing in the water unawares. They sank several, drowning hundreds of men in the 44f degree water.

Another big mistake was many of the GIs were wearing their life belts incorrectly around the waist instead of under the arms so when they leapt into the water the belt was useless and their heavy packs dragged them down. More G.I.s died in this incident than at Utah Beach on D-Day. For many years it was all kept top secret. After WWII, the head of German espionage, Reinhard Gehlen, was given a job with the CIA.

1945-BENITO MUSSOLINI DIED- Il Duce was on the run with his mistress Clara Petracci when they were apprehended by a roving band of Italian Partisans and stood up against a wall. Mussolini's last words before the guns went off were: "-But, but Colonel...."
My father in the US Army remembered driving into Milan to see his body hanging upside down, with townspeople invited to spit, shoot at or otherwise insult his corpse.

1947- Thor Heyderthal set out on a balsa wood raft called Kon Tiki to prove ancient Peruvians could have used the ocean current to reach Polynesia.

1952- The American military occupation of Japan ended, and Japan was restored to full self-government.

1954- Happy Birthday Godzilla! The movie by Ichjiro Honda was inspired when a Japanese fishing boat was fatally exposed by radioactive fallout from a U.S. hydrogen bomb test. Godzilla is an Anglicized version of the Japanese Kohjira, which is a combination of Gorilla and Whale. The parallels to the Hiroshima experience reached eerie levels when the film has a long sequence of a funeral dirge sung to the dead of Tokyo as we survey the devastation.
The famous roar was done by rubbing a resin-covered glove down some bass fiddle strings. The film was later released in the U.S. with American actor Raymond Burr (actually, Canadian actor..) acting in inserted scenes. The complete Japanese version of the film was not seen in North America until 2004.

1961-At La Scala, When tenor Guiseppi Di Stefano took ill, a young schoolteacher from Modena took the lead role in the opera La Boheme. Lucciano Pavarotti debuted.

1965- At the same time he was sending the first combat troops to Vietnam, President Lyndon Johnson also sent 22,000 Marines to overrun the Dominican Republic. He said it was to save it from "Communist Dictatorship", but no Communist ties to the rebels was ever proven.

1967- Citing his Black Muslim religion, world champion prizefighter Cassius Clay, now renamed Muhammad Ali, refused to be drafted into the army to fight in the Vietnam War. "I’m not mad at any Vietnamese person over there." The World Boxing Federation stripped Ali of his championship title but he won it back during the 'Rumble in the Jungle" prizefight against George Foreman in 1974.

2004- ABU GHARIB-American network news confirmed a story first aired on Arab TV that U.S. and British soldiers were torturing Iraqi prisoners in violation of the Geneva Convention. The government asked the compliant American media to sit on the story, until after Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld testified to the 9-11 Commission.

Graphic photos went around the internet from a prison called Abu Gharib. It was once a prison used by dictator Saddam Hussein. President Bush and Rumsfeld claimed they had no knowledge the abuses, while in reality documents released later said they knew and approved it all in detail. The Pentagon investigations in 2004 cleared all the top officials of any wrongdoing. Just a few low level National Guard soldiers were blamed, and their commander General Jane Kaminski was reprimanded.
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Yesterday’s Question: Quiz: What does it mean to raise your hackles?

Answer: When a rooster gets angry, the feathers on his neck extend and ruffle. They are called hackles. So to raise your hackles means to make you upset.


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