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January 3rd, 2008 thur
January 3rd, 2008

Watched David Letterman do his first show today. I was a regular Tonight Show viewer, but now I won't watch Leno until the strike is over. I feel for Jay Leno, because I know he has been a strong friend to union people in the past. He must be under awful pressure. But Letterman's Show was great, Robin Williams was funnier than I've seen in a long time.

Nods to the WGA for understanding that todays strikes are not won in the streets but in the press. By doing what they did on Letterman, they did more damage to the Corporate side than many hours of walking picketlines in the cold. It also proves that the WGA's demands aren't insanely out of the question. And you can only do stuff like that by sticking together. Corporations LOVE when you think you can go it alone. It's their greatest single weapon. Who was it who said-The individual who has no concern for his fellow man will have the greatest difficulty in life. It is from that individual that all human failure stems.

Dave's beard didn't look like this, but it was close.

I like the beard, too! Bravo Dave. Bravo, WGA.

Quiz: Who are these men? Tito Schipa, Jussi Bjoerling, Jan Peerce, Benjamino Gigli, Guiseppi DiStefano, Lauritz Melchior? Hint- they all had the same kinda job.

Yesterdays question answered below: If the ancient Roman’s named the months, who named the days of the week?
History for 1/3/2008
Birthdays: Marcus Tullius Cicero, John Paul Jones, Victor Borge, Zazu Pitts, Sergio Leone, Hank Stramm, Bobby Hull, Robert Loggia, Maxene Andrews of the Andrews Sisters, Ray Milland, Anna Mae Wong, Steven Stills, J.R.R. Tolkein, Victoria Principal, Mel Gibson is 53.

1777- BATTLE OF PRINCETON- After the Christmas victory at Trenton George Washington’s little army gives the main British army the slip, wheels around behind them and surprise attacks another redcoat regiment at Princeton New Jersey. Years before young student Alexander Hamilton had failed the entrance requirements to study at Princeton University and instead went to Kings College, later renamed Columbia. Now artillery major Hamilton had a pleasure rare among rejected college applicants- that of being allowed to fire a few cannon rounds into the college’s admissions building.

1871- Henry Bradley patents Oleomargerine in the U.S.. It had been demonstrated in the Paris Exhibition of 1867 as a butter that didn't spoil, so it could be used by armies in the field.

1899- An editorial in the New York Times refers to the horseless carriage as an “Automobile”. This is the earliest known use of the word.

1925-Italian Prime Minister Benito Mussolini suspended democracy and his black shirted followers declared him Il Duce, or the leader. He became dictator of Italy.

1926- General Motors introduced the Pontiac brand of automobile.

1933- MGM hired producer David O. Selznick to produce movies. His father-in-law Louis B. Mayer set his salary at $4000 a week. Newspapers joked “The Son-In-Law Also Rises”

1946- Lord Haw-Haw ,William Joyce, the English voice of Nazi radio propaganda broadcast from Berlin, was hanged for treason. English Fascist Joyce was actually born in Brooklyn but moved to England at an early age. He was nicknamed Lord Haw-Haw because of his stuffy upper class accent.

1952-The T.V. series DRAGNET premiered today. “The story you have seen is true, the names have been changed to protect the innocent.” Star Jack Webb produced and wrote most of the scripts and oversaw the deadpan acting style.”Just the facts, Mam..”

1958- Howard Rushmore was the editor of Confidential, one of the most ruthless scandal magazines in show business. This day for reasons never explained Rushmore murdered his wife then took his own life in the back of a NYC taxicab. Today Howard Rushmore would probably be considered a serious journalist.

1967- Jack Ruby, real name Jacob Rubenstein, the murderer of Lee Harvey Oswald, died of lung cancer in prison. To the end he was refused a meeting with Congress where he claimed he could discuss his patriotic motives for killing Oswald. Retired Mafia don Bill Bonano said Ruby being Jewish and not Sicilian, was the type of hood the mob used for clean-up jobs. That he was a soldier for Chicago boss Sam Giancana. Others say Ruby was just a two bit hood who claimed he was more important than he actually was.

1973- Boatbuilding tycoon and Florida developer George Steinbrenner leads a group that buys the last place New York Yankees baseball club from CBS. He ran meetings with his board of directors with lines like: "You guys all have one vote on this board, but I have six, so what I say goes !" "The Boss" becomes one of the more colorful baseball owners and propelled the Yankees into a new era of championship contention. If you believe there is no money in sports teams except for players, Steinbrenner bought the Yankees for $10 million and today they are worth $100 million.

2004- After partying hard all News Year in Las Vegas, 22 year old pop singer Britney Spears married friend Jay Alexander for a joke. Later after she woke up, she realized the jokes on her. Because the marriage was legal. She annulled it a day later. Alexander, who listed himself as unemployed, was soon seen driving around rural Louisiana in a $90,000 luxury BMW.
Yesterdays question answered below: If the ancient Romans named the months, who named the days of the week?

ANSWER: The Romans at first had a ten day week, three weeks to the month, the Kalends, Ides and Nones. So today would be the Third Day of the Kalends of Janus, in the 8th year of the reign of Emperor Bush Dubyius Minor. When Caesar reformed the calendar they went to an 8 day week, finally to a seven day week, all named for the visible planets- Sun Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Saturn. This system lives on in Latin countries like France- Lundi-( Moon), Mardi ( Mars), Mercredi (Mercury), Jeudi ( Jupiter) Vendredi (Venus), and Samedi ( Saturn).
Christian monks working in the Germanic lands like Anglo-Saxon England had to adapt the calendar into terms their flock understood, even if it meant using the names of the Old German Gods- after Sonnandag or Sun-Day and Moon-Day comes Tyrs Dag, Odin’s Day or Wodensday, Thor’s Day ( Like Jupiter, he also threw thunderbolts around), Frejyas Day ( Frejya was a goddess like Venus) then Saturn’s Day.