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November 06, 2007 tues.
November 6th, 2007

The WRITER'S STRIKE, that we all expected, has finally started. Good luck to them and all creative people who seek to better their conditions in this corporate heavy world.
courtesy of

Sounds like the producers were preparing for this showdown for awhile, so it is likely to be long.

Animation people are only partially effected, since only a portion of the people who write for animation do so under a WGA contact. Most work under the Animation Guild 839 contract, which is not up until next year, including it's no strike-clause. But our hearts go out to our brother and sister artists in their time of trial.

As animators, look at this example when you see powerful members of your profession going out to support their union. Tina Fey, Jay Leno, John Stewart. That's what makes the WGA and the Actors and Directors' Guilds so powerful in Hollywood. You're as strong as you are willing to stand up for your friends. The bosses love when we all think only about ourselves. We are much more easily controlled then. For people who think unions are only for auto-workers, what is a more solitary and creative job than being a writer? Yet there they are. Think of all the good we could do if all animators supported each other this way.

In the next weeks, expect to hear a lot of nasty stuff in the media about the spoiled-rich-Hollywood writers who make millions. That we should be sensitive to the problems of multinational corporate CEOs. Duh-? Remember these "news" stories are produced by the same corporate media who spin Iraq and politics and get us so frustrated. It's all about how the message if delivered to you. The fact is 46% of the WGA is unemployed, most of the big studios are an annex of some giant multinational companies and they are all making a killing in DVD and download profits. They won't give anything up without a fight.

People think the good money and cushy life of a Hollywood film person was created out of the ether like the seasons turning. Don't be naive. No company head wakes up and says" I feel so good today I think I'll give all my people a raise!" The fact is, all those better conditions were wrung out of the companies by struggle. According to that lefty rag Business Week, 25 years ago, for every dollar you and I made, our employer made $29. Today the ratio is $456 to our one!

So if you come upon a WGA picketline, You're all welcome to show support,shoulder a sign for awhile, and even a kind word or a cheer as you pass by. I've been on picket lines often, and it's no fun to see cold angry stares of strangers passing by, and even an occasional expletive shouted from a moving car.
So the good wishes really count.

courtesy of my pal,writer Earl Kress,

QUIZ- How many American presidential elections were deadlocked elections?

The answer to yesterdays question- what is marinara sauce? Below.
History for 11/6/2007
Birthdays: Sophocles 495BC, Joanna La Loca (the Mad- 1479), John Phillip Sousa, Joseph Smith the founder of the Mormons, Ignacz Paderewski, Charles Dow of Dow Jones, Adolphus Sax inventor of the Saxophone, James Naismith the inventor of Basketball, Mike Nichols, Edsel Ford, animator Eddie Rehberg, Sally Field is 62, Ray Coniff, John Olsen of the comedy duo Olsen & Johnson, Harold Ross the founder of the New Yorker magazine, Maria Shriver is 53, Ethan Hawke is 27, Rebecca Romjin

Today is the Feast of Saint Leonard of Noblac, the Patron Saint of Women in Labor and Prisoners of War. -is there a connection there..?

1528-Conquistador Alva Nunez Cabeza de Vaca was shipwrecked on the coast of Texas. The first European to set foot in Texas. Cabeza de Vaca means Head of a Cow.

1566-Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe got his nose cut off in a duel. Thereafter he wore a gold cup over the scar, held in place by a string .

1730- King Frederick William Ist of Prussia has General Von Katte, the gay lover of his son Crown Prince Frederick, beheaded by saber. He even made his horrified son to watch the execution from a window. Young Frederick was never that fond of his dad after this. When the old sadist died, he became King Frederick the Great and slept with whomever he liked. Frederick William Ist was the originator of mechanically strict Prussian discipline that made the German Army famous. He was so feared by his subjects that they used to run away when he arrived. The king caught one wretch in a doorway and drubbed in the face with his cane, shouting: "WHY ARE YOU AFRAID? YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO LOVE ME-YOU SCUM!"

1806- The news reached London of the great naval victory of Trafalgar and the death of Admiral Nelson. The news was brought by a small ship named the HMS Pickle. Englishmen great and small fell into extreme grief over the death of their greatest naval hero. Samuel Coleridge wrote: 'When Nelson died, it seemed as if no man was a stranger to another, for all were made acquaintances in the rites of a common anguish."

1812- On this day during Napoleons Retreat from Moscow, it began to snow.

1860- Abraham Lincoln of Illinois won the presidency of the United States. The first Republican to win an election. Back then, almost no one in the South voted Republican.

1869- Rutgers beat Princeton 6-4 in the first college football game.

1916- The elderly cowboy showman Buffalo Bill made one of his last public appearances in El Paso Texas. El Paso had been as wild and bloody a frontier town as Deadwood or Tombstone, but now it was a quiet modern city. Telephone and electricity wires crisscrossed overhead and streetcars clattered down the streets where gunfighters once shot it out. Buffalo Bills parade seemed to make plain to all the final passing of the Old West. The cheers brought tears running down the old scout's long white mustache. He died of prostate cancer a few weeks later.

1941- In an evening nationwide radio broadcast Comrade Josef Stalin told the Soviet Union that although Russian losses were heavy, the Germans had already lost 4.5 million men and were on the run. It was all pure fiction. In reality Leningrad was surrounded, Moscow was threatened and almost 40% of Russia’s population was under Nazi occupation.

1947- The North Atlantic Treaty Organization- NATO created.

1962- Ted Kennedy first elected to the Senate from Mass.

1966- A great flood hits the City of Venice. An international effort is mounted to save her priceless artifacts. Venice never suffered floods until the end of the nineteenth century when a deep channel was dug in the Venetian lagoon to accommodate modern heavy shipping to the new harbor of La Spezia. This imbalance messed up the natural flood cycle from the Adriatic. Added to that the whole darn city is resting on thousands of wooden pilings pounded into a sand bar when Attila the Hun was still running around. Venice is still sinking a few inches each century.

1975- First appearance of the band the Sex Pistols.


Question: What is Marinara Sauce?

Answer: In the 16th century the Spanish introduced the tomato from America. Italian women who were married to fishermen used the new thing to make a quick, inexpensive sauce which could sit around all day for them to return from the sea. It was known as Mariners’ Sauce, La Marinara. Ironically, it has no fish ingredients of any kind in it.